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206 views • June 20, 2023

Blinken Had 'Robust Conversation' With China’s Xi, Wrapping up a Rare Trip to Beijing Amid Criticism

Capitol Report
Capitol Report
U.S. State Secretary Antony Blinken had a "robust conversation" with Chinese leader Xi Jinping and other top diplomats in Beijing, ending a two-day trip that some critics have argued is a win for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Blinken, the most senior U.S. official to travel to China since President Joe Biden took office, met with Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang on Sunday before holding talks with the communist regime’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, on Monday. His trip marks the first visit to China by a U.S. secretary of state since October 2018. Unlike talks with Qin and Wang, which lasted several hours, Blinken’s meeting with Xi lasted about 35 minutes. “I came to Beijing to strengthen high-level challenges of communication, to make clear our positions and intentions in areas of disagreement, and to explore areas where we might work together when our interests align on shared transnational challenges. And we did all of that,” Blinken said at the press conference after the meeting with Xi in Beijing. "During those meetings, we had a robust conversation about regional and global challenges." Blinken said he raised issues such as "Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine," the CCP's "provocative actions in the Taiwan Strait, as well as in the South and East China Seas," and human rights violations in Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong. The top U.S. diplomat said the talks also touched on the respective economic policies, including Washington's "concern about China’s unfair treatment of U.S. companies." “It was clear coming in that the relationship was at a point of instability,” Blinken told reporters in Beijing. “And both sides recognized the need to work to stabilize it.” Among the U.S. priorities was to resume the bilateral exchanges on the military level. But "at this moment, China has not agreed to move forward with that," Blinken told reporters, even though he had "repeatedly" raised the issue during the two-day trip. "We’re not going to have success on every issue between us on any given day, but in a whole variety of areas, on the terms that we set for this trip, we have made progress, and we are moving forward," Blinken said. "But again, I want to emphasize none of this gets solved, resolved with one visit, one trip, one conversation. It’s a process." Taiwan While both Blinken and Xi expressed a willingness to continue the communication, there is little indication that the Chinese regime is prepared to bend from its positions on issues like Taiwan. In recent years, Xi had repeatedly vowed to annex Taiwan, a self-ruled island the CCP viewed as its own territory, and directly threatened war to achieve that goal. On Sunday, Qin told Blinken that Taiwan is “the core of the core interests” of the communist regime and “the most prominent risk” in the U.S-China ties. Blinken reiterated on Monday that the United States will continue to advocate its “One China” policy, under which Washington officially recognizes Beijing rather than Taipei. However, Blinken noted the Taiwan Relations Act makes clear that the U.S. decision to establish diplomatic ties with China instead of Taiwan rests upon the expectation that the future of Taiwan will be determined by peaceful means. "We and many others have deep concerns about some of the provocative actions that China has taken in recent years, going back to 2016," he told reporters. "The reason that this is a concern for so many countries, not just the United States, is that were there to be a crisis over Taiwan, the likelihood is that that would produce an economic crisis that could affect quite literally the entire world." Blinken's Visit 'Bolsters Chairman Xi’s Image' While there doesn’t appear to be any major breakthrough in bilateral ties following Blinken’s visit, experts told The Epoch Times prior to Blinken’s meeting with Xi that the visit would serve Beijing's interests. "If its relationship with the United States continues to decline or comes to the point of conflict, foreign investors will accelerate the pace of pulling money out of China, which will make
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