The US is stepping up diplomatic efforts with China over Taiwan and Russia

NEW YORK – The Biden administration on Friday stepped up diplomatic efforts to urge China to end provocative actions against Taiwan and warned it against any active support for Russia in its war against Ukraine.

According to US officials, Secretary of State Antony Blinken raised both cases when meeting his Chinese counterpart on Friday at a meeting on the sidelines of the annual UN General Assembly in New York. The session was one of the few Blinken kept on its schedule following the death of his father on Thursday.

The officials declined to describe the Chinese response, but said Foreign Minister Wang Yi was receptive to the messages and the two men discussed the need to “maintain open lines of communication and responsibly manage US-China relations, particularly in times of tension.” .”

The talks between Blinken and Wang come at a time of intense tensions on both issues and ahead of an expected November meeting between Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping. Biden’s recent comments about Taiwan and China’s tacit support for the war in Ukraine are just two of the recent irritations in Washington-Beijing relations.

State Department spokesman Ned Price said Blinken reiterated to Wang the government’s commitment to “maintain peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait,” despite Biden’s assertion earlier this week that the US would send troops to help Taiwan in the event of a Chinese to defend against invasion.

China regards the self-governing island of Taiwan as its sovereign territory, has not ruled out forced union with the mainland, and has stepped up military activity in the region in recent months. This activity is in response, at least in part, to high-level visits by the US Congress to Taipei, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and increased US arms sales.

Blinken “stressed that maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait is vital to regional and global security and prosperity,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement. She added that the US remains committed to its “one China” policy, which does not support Taiwan’s independence.

Regarding Russia, US officials said Blinken underscored the damage that would be done to Sino-US relations should Beijing take a more active role in supporting the war in Ukraine. US officials said they were cautiously optimistic about recent comments from Chinese leaders about their concerns about the war and its aftermath, and Blinken wanted to make the point.

Blinken “highlights the implications if the PRC supported Moscow’s invasion of a sovereign state,” Price said in the statement. “PRC” refers to China’s official name, the People’s Republic of China.

The US-China relationship has grown increasingly tense in recent years over a number of issues, including the persecution of Muslims and ethnic minorities in China’s western Xinjiang region, the crackdown on dissidents in Tibet and Hong Kong, aggressive Chinese actions in the South China Sea and against China Taiwan and how to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

Nonetheless, Price said the US remains “open to cooperation with the PRC where our interests overlap.” One area the US hopes to continue coordinating on is climate change.


For more AP coverage of the UN General Assembly, see

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Sarah Y. Kim

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