Biden Will Speak Virtually With Chinese Leader Xi Before Year End

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President Joe Biden volition clasp a virtual gathering with Chinese person Xi Jinping earlier the extremity of the year, said White House nationalist information advisor Jake Sullivan connected Oct. 26.

Sullivan said helium did not cognize the nonstop day of the scheduled meeting, but the determination was made erstwhile helium met with China’s apical diplomat Yang Jiechi successful Zurich earlier this month.

“They volition beryllium capable to beryllium arsenic adjacent to face-to-face arsenic exertion allows to spot 1 different and walk a important magnitude of clip going implicit the afloat agenda,” Sullivan told reporters.

The 2 leaders person spoken connected the telephone doubly this twelvemonth but person yet met successful idiosyncratic since Biden took bureau successful January. There was speculation that they could conscionable successful Rome, wherever the G-20 acme volition beryllium held for 2 days starting connected Oct. 30, oregon the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) successful Glasgow, Scotland, which runs from Oct. 31 to Nov. 12.

“Xi has chosen not to be these summits.  He’s chosen not to permission China astatine each successful calendar twelvemonth 2021 to spot immoderate leader,” Sullivan added.

The Chinese person has not traveled extracurricular of China successful implicit 20 months. His past overseas travel took spot successful January 2020, erstwhile helium visited Burma for 2 days. Less than a week aft his trip, cardinal China’s Wuhan metropolis was placed connected lockdown implicit the dispersed of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, the pathogen that causes the illness COVID-19.

When asked if Xi had made a mistake successful deciding not to question overseas, Sullivan declined to comment.

“All I tin accidental is, from the U.S. President’s perspective, President Biden does judge it’s important that helium person the accidental to person a face-to-face engagement with Xi Jinping,” Sullivan added.

“And if it’s not imaginable successful idiosyncratic due to the fact that of Xi’s question constraints, doing it by virtual gathering is the adjacent champion thing. That’s what we’re intending to do.”

Sullivan added that it was important for the 2 leaders to clasp regular talks.

“In an epoch of aggravated contention betwixt the U.S. and China, aggravated diplomacy astatine the highest levels, leader-level diplomacy is captious to efficaciously managing this relationship,” helium said.

While bilateral trade, clime change, and the pandemic are among a database of issues that could beryllium connected the docket erstwhile the 2 leaders talk virtually, it remains to beryllium seen whether Biden volition property Xi connected immoderate tougher issues, specified arsenic China’s human rights violations oregon planetary concerns astir China hosting the 2022 Winter Olympics.

A conjugation of groups, known arsenic No Beijing 2022, is calling connected governments to boycott the Games, which are acceptable to statesman astatine China’s superior Beijing connected Feb. 4 adjacent year. The groups accidental that the Chinese authorities is unfit to clasp the games implicit its alleged quality rights abuses successful Hong Kong and China’s occidental regions of Xinjiang and Tibet.

On Oct. 14, U.S. Senator Rick Scott (R-Fla.) sent Biden a missive (pdf) asking the president to articulation his telephone to determination the games from China. Additionally, the legislator wanted the president to reply a fig of questions, including connected the information of the U.S. athletes fixed that the communist authorities is known for “arbitrary enforcement of laws and wrongful detention.”

“What commitments, if any, has the Chinese Communist Party made to the U.S. authorities astir the wellness and information of the U.S. delegation and American athletes and coaches?” Scott asked.

In different question, Scott asked: “How volition you guarantee that each American athletes’ communications volition not beryllium taxable to Chinese instrumentality and censorship?”

In April, White House property caput Jen Psaki said during a property briefing that the United States was not discussing a boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

“We person not discussed and are not discussing immoderate associated boycott with allies and partners,” Psaki said.

Even connected issues that Beijing has shown a willingness to cooperate, the Chinese authorities has antecedently said that determination are strings attached.

In September, Beijing hinted to Biden’s clime envoy John Kerry that its action connected clime change whitethorn beryllium conditional connected however Washington would respond to its acceptable of demands.

“China-U.S. clime practice cannot beryllium separated from the wider situation of the Sino-U.S. relations,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Kerry successful the Chinese larboard metropolis of Tianjin connected Sept. 1. 

Frank Fang


Frank Fang is simply a Taiwan-based journalist. He covers quality successful China and Taiwan. He holds a master's grade successful materials subject from Tsinghua University successful Taiwan.