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Blinken and Yang Jiechi Discuss the Future of U.S.-China Relations

Feb. 6 , 2021 (EIRNS)—U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken called Yang Jiechi, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the CPC Central Committee, to discuss U.S.-China relations under the Biden administration. Blinken reiterated the confrontational approach taken by Biden in his foreign policy speech earlier this week, stating through his spokesperson Ned Price that

“the United States will continue to stand up for human rights and democratic values, including in Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong, and … [will] hold the P.R.C. accountable for its efforts to threaten stability in the Indo-Pacific, including across the Taiwan Strait, and its undermining of the rules-based international system.”

Yang Jiechi, according to Xinhua, stated that China

“urges the United States to rectify its mistakes made over a period of time and work with China to uphold the spirit of no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, focus on cooperation and manage differences…. Yang stressed that the two sides should respect each other’s core interests and choices of political system and development path, and manage their domestic affairs well.”

Yang made it clear that

“China will unswervingly follow its path of socialism with Chinese characteristics and no force could stop the realization of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation…. The Taiwan question, the most important and sensitive core issue in China-U.S. relations, bears on China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, Yang said. The United States should strictly abide by the one-China principle and the three Sino-U.S. joint communiqués, he said, adding that Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet-related affairs are all China’s internal affairs and allow no interference by any external forces.”

According to the Chinese read-out of the meeting, Blinken said that “the U.S. side will continue to pursue the one-China principle,” although this was not mentioned in the State Department communiqué.

Global Times editor-in-chief Hu Xijin commented hopefully on Feb. 6 that “By initiating the phone call, Blinken’s primary purpose was to make constructive communication with China. It is unlikely that he wanted to call just to blast China in opposition on multiple fronts.” But he then warned:

“It is obvious to the world that China’s development is unstoppable. It is wishful thinking for the U.S. to try and rope in its allies to oppose China. European countries have made it clear that they do not wish to blindly follow Washington in fighting against Beijing because doing so is not in line with their core interests. The same goes for most countries in the Asia-Pacific.”

Therefore, Hu concluded, “The Biden administration is well versed in terms of strategy. We believe that they can distinguish the pros from the cons. No matter what they say to the American people, we hope their actual actions can bring the U.S.’ China policy from the cloud of fantasy back down to pragmatic ground.”


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