Biden’s adviser held hours of “constructive” talks with the Chinese diplomat | Albiseyler

Biden's adviser held hours of "constructive" talks with the Chinese diplomat

WASHINGTON/BEIJING, Sept 17 (Reuters) – White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan met Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi for several hours in Malta this weekend, Beijing and Washington said on Sunday, as the world’s two biggest economies seek to stabilize troubled relations .

The two sides held “sincere, substantive and constructive” talks during several meetings held on September 16-17, according to separate statements from the White House and China’s foreign ministry released on Sunday.

There were also “limited” early signs that severed military communications between the two sides could begin to resume, a senior Biden administration official said.

Chinese officials did not comment on the prospect of military-to-military communications.

Sullivan’s meeting with Wang was the latest in a series of high-level discussions between US and Chinese officials that could lay the groundwork for a meeting between US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping later this year.

They come amid a series of shake-ups in the top ranks of China’s government, including the disappearance of Defense Minister Li Shangfu, and turmoil in the country’s economy that has caused consternation in foreign capitals.

The talks in Malta lasted about 12 hours over two days, a senior Biden administration official told reporters. Sullivan last met Wang in Vienna in May.

China’s Foreign Ministry said the two sides agreed to maintain high-level exchanges and bilateral consultations on Asia-Pacific affairs, maritime affairs and foreign policy.

The United States has told China it is ready to work together to fight narcotics, artificial intelligence and climate change, even as it raised concerns about unspecified Chinese support for Russia and Beijing, which recently sent fighter jets across the sensitive middle line of the Taiwan Strait, the US. said the official.

Wang warned the United States that the Taiwan issue is “the first insurmountable red line of Sino-US relations,” according to a Chinese Foreign Ministry statement. China claims the self-governing island as its own territory.

Wang also said that China’s development has “strong internal momentum” and “cannot be stopped” and that “the Chinese people’s legitimate right to development cannot be taken away.”

The United States has said it seeks healthy competition with China based on fair rules that benefit both countries, but China has said that despite challenging competition, the U.S. is engaged in stifling and limiting its growth.

A U.S. official said “there have been some small or limited indications” that Beijing is prepared to reopen some military-to-military lines used to de-escalate the conflict between the two countries after those ties were severed following a visit by the former president in August 2022. Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi on Taiwan, which angered China.

In a statement, the White House strongly suggested that further meetings be held between the US and China, adding that both sides are “committed to maintaining this strategic channel of communication and pursuing further high-level engagement and consultation in key areas… in the coming months.”

Biden expressed disappointment this month that Xi had missed the Group of 20 leaders’ summit in India, but said he would “see” him. Another likely opportunity for Biden to meet with Xi is the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco in November, where US advisers have hoped for months to hold such a meeting.

US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Biden’s climate envoy John Kerry traveled to China this year to thaw relations and ensure continued communication between the two countries amid tensions that flared after the US military shot down a Chinese surveillance balloon that traveled over the United States.

Biden and Xi last met in 2022 on the sidelines of the G20 summit in the Indonesian resort of Bali.

Reporting by Steve Holland and Trevor Hunnicutt in Washington, Andrea Shalal in Wilmington, Delaware, Laurie Chen and Liz Lee in Beijing; Screenplay: Andrea Shalal, Jason Lange and Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Scott Malone, Will Dunham, Susan Fenton, Sandra Maler and Michael Perry

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Laurie Chen is the China correspondent for the Reuters Beijing bureau, covering politics and general news. Before joining Reuters, she covered China for six years at Agence France-Presse and the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. He is fluent in Mandarin.

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