Biden, Xi to hold much anticipated talks near San Francisco « Khabarhub
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Biden, Xi to hold much anticipated talks near San Francisco


15 November 2023  

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WASGINGTON DC: U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping will hold talks Wednesday at a historic estate near San Francisco, California.

High on the agenda is restoring normal communication channels between the militaries of the world’s two largest economies. China severed those contacts in August 2022, when then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan, the self-ruled island Beijing considers part of the mainland.

Relations between Beijing and Washington worsened in February after President Biden ordered a Chinese spy balloon that drifted over the United States to be shot down.

Several high-ranking Biden administration officials, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, have since visited Beijing in recent months to ease the tensions.

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told VOA White House Bureau Chief Patsy Widakuswara Tuesday that Biden is looking forward to his meeting with Xi, which comes after “many, many ups and downs in our relationship.”

“He believes that as two leaders running two countries, that literally the bilateral relationship is one of the most consequential in the world, that we’ve got to get it onto a more responsible footing than it is or has been to date,” Kirby said.

Wednesday’s discussion at the historic Filoli mansion, located about 40 kilometers south of San Francisco, is taking place on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, or APEC, summit. It is the first between Biden and Xi since they met in Bali, Indonesia, last November,

Kirby said Biden is heading into his meeting with Xi “from a strong position” with the U.S. economy at the strongest point now “than it’s been in many, many decades.”

The Biden-Xi summit comes just weeks before Taiwan’s presidential election in January. Voter opinion polls show Vice President William Lai, the standard bearer of the ruling pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party, is leading Hou Yu-ih, the former mayor of New Taipei City and candidate of the Kuomintang Party, which favors closer ties with mainland China.

Kirby would not reveal any specifics of what Biden and Xi would be discussing in regard to China, but said, “It is not uncommon” for Chinese actors “to behave irresponsibly when it comes to election interference in the region and beyond.”

“We believe that a real strength of democracy is free and fair elections that are unimpeded and uninterrupted and not impaired by foreign interference,” he said.

VOA

Publish Date : 15 November 2023 18:26 PM

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