“China-U.S. relations are at an all-time low.”
Chinese Chancellor, Qin GangHe said Sunday during a meeting in Beijing with the U.S. Secretary of State, Antony Blinkenthat the relations between the two powers “are in a state of at their lowest point since the establishment of diplomatic relations.”
Qin noted that the state of bilateral ties “does not serve the fundamental interests of the two peoples nor to the common expectations of the international community.”reported state broadcaster CCTV.
The Chinese foreign minister made “clear demands on China’s core interests and main concerns, including the Taiwan question.” to Blinken, who began a two-day visit to the Asian country on Sunday.
Qin also stated that “China’s policy toward the U.S. has always maintained continuity and stability, and is fundamentally guided by the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and cooperation.” and that the Asian country is committed to building a “stable, predictable and constructive” relationship.
The chancellor expressed his hope that Washington would “will maintain an objective and rational perception of China.“to move in the same direction and to handle unexpected eventualities calmly, professionally and rationally”.
“Both parties held a dialogue long, frank, deep and constructive on the overall China-U.S. relationship and other related important issues,” CCTV said in a statement posted on its social media.
The two delegations agreed to “encourage the expansion of educational exchanges,” “actively explore the possibility of increasing passenger flights between China and the United States,” and “welcome more students, scholars and businessmen to visit the other side.”
For his part, Blinken invited his counterpart to visit the United States, where Qin was ambassador before being promoted to chancellor at the end of 2022, and emphasized “the importance of diplomacy and keeping open channels of communication in all areas to reduce the risk of miscalculations.”said U.S. diplomatic spokesman Matthew Miller.
The U.S. foreign minister also raised with his Chinese counterpart “a number of issues of concern,” as well as as well as “opportunities” on which Washington and Beijing can cooperate.
“The secretary made clear that the U.S. will always defend the interests and values of the American people and will work with its partners and allies to promote a vision of a free world that upholds a rules-based international order,” Miller explained.
The meeting concluded after 20:00 local time (13:00 Spanish peninsular time) after a prolonged for five and a half hoursafter which the two officials had dinner together.
On Monday, the U.S. official may meet with the head of the Chinese Communist Party’s foreign affairs commission, Wang Yi, or even with the president, Xi Jinping.
Blinken arrived early Sunday morning locally in Beijing, becoming the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit China since U.S. President Joe Biden began his term in office in 2021, a period in which bilateral relations have continued to deteriorate due to trade, geopolitical and economic tensions.
Indeed, Qin and Blinken exchanged rebukes Wednesday during a telephone conversation that marked the first high-level bilateral contact in months, with Qin calling on the United States to cease its efforts to harm sovereign security interests and Blinken urging Qin to “keep the lines of communication open.” to avoid conflict.
Blinken arrived in Peking four months later than planned. The shooting down of a suspected Chinese spy balloon over U.S. territory caused last February to cancel at the last minute the visit that had been confirmed that same month.