Washington and Beijing exchange warnings about Taiwan ahead of the Biden Xi summit

The United States and China exchanged stern warnings about Taiwan on Saturday, ahead of a virtual summit scheduled for Monday between US Presidents Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

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In an interview with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken “expressed concern over the PRC’s continued military, diplomatic and economic pressure against Taiwan,” according to a statement from the State Department.

millimeter. Biden and Xi are scheduled to meet for the third time Monday evening Washington time (early Tuesday in Beijing) via video conference. Conversation between m. Blinken and Wang were scheduled to prepare for this summit.

The State Department said the US diplomatic chief “urged Beijing to engage in meaningful dialogue” to resolve its differences with Taipei “peacefully and in accordance with the wishes and interests of the people of Taiwan.”

For his part, Wang warned the United States against any action that could be interpreted as support for “Taiwan independence,” according to a summary of the exchange released by the Chinese government.

And the Chinese Foreign Minister warned that “any complicity or support towards the ‘Taiwan independence’ forces is detrimental to peace in the Taiwan Strait and can only be reversed.”

The Biden-Xi summit is taking place as differences pile up between Washington and Beijing, both of whom are steadfast on their positions on trade or human rights.

Tensions have risen in recent weeks over Taiwan, which Beijing considers a rebellious province that must return to its fold.

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Beijing has intensified its measures in recent years to isolate Taiwan on the international stage and stop any attempt to recognize the island as an independent state.

China has also intensified its military activity near Taiwan. Washington renewed its commitment to help Taipei build and strengthen its defense.

The State Department said Monday’s summit “provides an opportunity for the two leaders to discuss how to responsibly deal with competition between the United States and the People’s Republic of China, while working together in areas where interests align.”

The US president has never hidden his desire to meet the Chinese leader in person, and has not hesitated to criticize his absence during the last two G-20 summits and COP 26.

But he must be content with a hypothetical meeting with Xi Jinping, who has not left China for nearly two years, citing health reasons.

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