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US Steps Up China Diplomatic Efforts   09/24 09:03

   The Biden administration on Friday ramped up its diplomatic efforts to press 
China to end provocative actions against Taiwan and warned it about any active 
support for Russia in its war against Ukraine.

   NEW YORK (AP) -- The Biden administration on Friday ramped up its diplomatic 
efforts to press China to end provocative actions against Taiwan and warned it 
about any active support for Russia in its war against Ukraine.

   Secretary of State Antony Blinken made both cases in a meeting with his 
Chinese counterpart on Friday in a meeting on the sidelines of the annual U.N. 
General Assembly in New York, according to U.S. officials. The session was one 
of the few that Blinken kept on his schedule after the death of his father on 
Thursday.

   The officials wouldn't describe the Chinese response, but said Foreign 
Minister Wang Yi was receptive to the messages and that the two men discussed 
the need "to maintain open lines of communication and responsibly manage the 
U.S.-China relationship, especially during times of tension."

   The talks between Blinken and Wang come amid a period of intense tensions on 
both issues and ahead of an expected meeting in November 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 latest irritants in 
relations between Washington and Beijing.

   State Department spokesman Ned Price said Blinken had affirmed to Wang the 
administration's commitment to "maintaining peace and stability across the 
Taiwan Strait" despite Biden's assertion earlier this week that the U.S. would 
send troops to defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion.

   China regards the self-governed island of Taiwan as its sovereign territory, 
has not ruled out force to reunify it with the mainland and has in recent 
months stepped up military activity in the area. That activity is at least 
partially in response to high-level U.S. congressional visits to Taipei, 
including by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and stepped-up American arms sales.

   Blinken "stressed that preserving peace and stability across the Taiwan 
Strait is critical to regional and global security and prosperity," Price said 
in a statement. It added that the U.S. remains committed to its "one-China 
policy" which does not support Taiwanese independence.

   On Russia, U.S. officials said Blinken underscored the damage that would be 
done to the Sino-U.S. relationship should Beijing take a more active role in 
supporting the war in Ukraine. U.S. officials have said they are cautiously 
optimistic about recent comments from Chinese leaders about their concerns over 
the war and its consequences, and Blinken wanted to drive the point home.

   Blinken "highlighted the implications if the PRC were to provide support to 
Moscow's invasion of a sovereign state," Price said in the statement. "PRC" 
refers to China's formal name, the People's Republic of China.

   The U.S.-China relationship has become increasingly fraught in recent years 
over multiple issues, including the persecution of Muslims and ethnic 
minorities in China's western Xinjiang region, clampdowns on dissent in Tibet 
and Hong Kong, aggressive Chinese actions in the South China Sea and against 
Taiwan, and the handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

   Nonetheless, Price said the U.S. continues to be "open to cooperating with 
the PRC where our interests intersect." One area the U.S. hopes to continue 
coordination is on climate change.

 
 
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