Xi Jinping takes on Joe Biden: Three explosive files against China and the US

Despite smiling and shaking hands, the two knew they wouldn’t give each other a gift. This Monday, Xi Jinping and Joe Biden held their first tête-à-tête in Bali after leading their countries. The Chinese and Americans know each other well: during their previous meetings, they were both vice presidents. Today they are headed by superpowers, economic rivals and political rivals.

The meeting was precisely aimed ahead of the G20 summit in Bali“To prevent competition from degenerating into conflict”, according to the creation of the President of the United States. Relations between the two countries have soured sharply in recent years amid growing trade ties. There is no joint report at the end of the meeting, but a separate communication.

“US and China must manage this competition responsibly”Joe Biden insisted on confronting his Chinese counterpart.And keep the lines of communication open.” It was agreed that US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken would visit China soon.

Washington now defines Beijing as its own The only real competitor on the world stage is a power with the will and ability to change the current balance. According to Joe Bien, the meeting in Bali should allow both leaders to come clean.red lines” Avoid direct or indirect confrontation.

These are “Protections” Today is especially needed to avoid escalation around the three hotspots.

1. Taiwan

China has in recent months shown a firm desire to regain control of the island, which it considers part of its territory. “The Taiwan issue is at the core of China’s fundamental interests, the foundation of the political foundation of Sino-US relations, and the first uncrossed red line in Sino-US relations.”Gee told Biden during their three-hour interview.

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s August visit to Taipei was seen as a provocation in Beijing. Since then, the Chinese navy has increased manifold Demonstrations of power In the Taiwan Strait, it looks like maneuvers Preparations for invasion.

Joe Biden, for his part, criticized the measures “rude” From China “It undermines peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and the wider region”. But in the press conference that followed At the meeting, he made it clear he didn’t believe it“China’s Imminent Attempt to Invade Taiwan”.

Until now, the United States has been a “Strategic Ambiguity” US military support in Taiwan is possible in case of Chinese intervention. Joe Biden has repeatedly said in interviews in recent months that the United States would come to Taiwan’s aid in the event of an attack.

This U.S. assertiveness in Asia may reassure U.S. allies in the region who are concerned about Chinese ambitions. Joe Biden has promised to guarantee freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.

US military engagement with Ukraine against Russia may have warning value for China: Washington is not shy about pledging firm support to one of its allies.

2. Ukraine

China remains cautious after Russian invasion of Ukraine. Beijing has always refused to condemn the Russian attack, but now has some reservations about the conflict, which is being resolved over time.

Joe Biden received an open rebuke from Xi Jinping in Bali Moscow’s nuclear threat against Ukraine and its allies. According to the White House, the two leaders “Ukraine stressed their opposition to the use or threat of nuclear weapons”.

According to Beijing, Xi assured Biden that Beijing “deep concern” By conflict. “China is always on the side of peace and will continue to promote peace talks.” Between Russia and Ukraine, the Chinese leader said.

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Beijing has offered an alternative outlet for Russian hydrocarbons, which no longer make their way to Europe. But Washington believes that the Chinese are not pursuing a policy of disrupting economic sanctions imposed by the West. The Russian president’s absence from the G20 summit is also seen as a sign of his isolation on the international stage.

3. North Korea

North Korean leader Kim Yong Un has also been resurgent in recent weeks In a threatening posture. After an unprecedented series of missile launches, Pyongyang appears to be preparing for its seventh nuclear test in its history.

Joe Biden asked his Chinese counterpart to work “obviously” Pyongyang must not conduct a nuclear test, or Washington must act “defense”. President of the United States again and again “America’s Unwavering Commitment to Protecting Its Allies in the Indo-Pacific Region”. He met on Sunday with the leaders of Japan and South Korea, who share fears of a North Korean nuclear test. The US has military bases in both countries.

Pyongyang presents its ballistic tests as a response to aerial maneuvers in the region by the US and South Korea. A view shared by Beijing, which blames the US“Poison for regional security environment”.

China has been Pyongyang’s most important economic partner since the 1950s. China accounts for more than 90% of North Korea’s bilateral trade, economically suffocated by international sanctions and border closures to protect against the coronavirus.

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