Antony Blinken meets China’s Xi in a bid to ease soaring U.S.-China tensions

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, aiming to ease tensions between the two nations.

High-stakes visit: Blinken’s two-day trip to Beijing was focused on easing escalating tensions between the US and China, with issues surrounding trade, Taiwan, human rights, and military assertiveness in the South China Sea.
* The meeting between Blinken and Xi was not confirmed until an hour before it took place and lasted for 35 minutes.
* Xi mentioned progress and agreements on “some specific issues” without elaborating.

Earlier discussions: Blinken met with China’s top diplomat Wang Yi, during which both sides expressed willingness to talk but showed little inclination to bend from their positions on various disagreements.
* The US and China agreed to continue high-level discussions, though no major issues appeared closer to resolution.

Official statements: China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs called for the US to stop hyping up the “China threat theory” and interfering in China’s internal affairs, while the State Department stressed the importance of open channels of communication to prevent conflict.
* Both countries have acknowledged the low point in their relationship, and there may be more visits by senior US and Chinese officials in the near future.

View original article on NPR

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