China is not acting ‘neutral’ in the conflict between Ukraine and Russia and is ‘reinforcing’ Russian propaganda. According to US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, he told his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi. Blinken said this during a press conference in Bali, Indonesia, where the G20 summit is being held. Blinken said he discussed the Russian invasion with Yi and expressed concern about Beijing’s rapprochement with Moscow.
The two diplomats spoke at length on Saturday, describing their conversations as “candid”. “Despite the complexity of our relationship, I can say with some confidence that our representatives found today’s discussions useful, open and constructive,” Blinken said. “I once again shared with the State Council that we are concerned about the People’s Republic of China’s rapprochement with Russia.” A U.S. official later said the two sides “didn’t budge” during the talks, according to news agency Al Jazeera.
There is no neutral
Blinken said he did not think China would be neutral because it supported Russia at the United Nations and “reinforced Russian propaganda.” The official said the two sides have been “very open” about their differences, but that thanks to professional… Tone of voice Nevertheless, the talks were constructive.
Still, US officials warn of repercussions if China provides material support to the Kremlin’s war effort. The permission word is dropped. Blinken said he also highlighted US concerns about China’s “increasingly provocative rhetoric and actions near Taiwan and the vital importance of preserving peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.” Finally, Blinken said he touched on the issue of Uyghurs and the persecution of Tibetans in Xinjiang, western China.
In a statement, China’s Foreign Ministry said on the one hand, the two sides agreed to improve relations broadly, but at the same time, China listed a laundry list of grievances against Washington. For example, China and the US have accused China of “slandering and attacking” its political system. In a statement, Wang’s ministry condemned certain “misguided US positions” on Xinjiang, Hong Kong and the South China Sea.
Wang called on the US to immediately remove tariffs on Chinese goods, stop interfering in his country’s internal affairs and avoid harming its interests in the name of human rights and democracy.
Despite their rivalry, the world’s two largest economies remain important trading partners. The Biden administration is expected to soon ease some of Trump’s tariffs on Chinese goods, which could ease rising inflation in the United States.
Although Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was also present at the G20, Blinken did not speak with him. Asked about his refusal to speak to his Russian counterpart, Blinken said Washington had “no indication” that Russia would engage with G20 diplomats about its invasion of Ukraine. A day earlier, Lavrov walked out of talks with other G20 foreign ministers as Western powers criticized Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine.
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