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Biden and Xi talk Taiwan, technology and fentanyl in “candid” phone call

Biden and Xi talk Taiwan, technology and fentanyl in “candid” phone call

The American president, Joe Bidenand his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, discussed Taiwan, technology and fentanyl on Tuesday in a phone call that the White House characterized as “frank” and in which, according to the Chinese Government, there were some frictions.

It was the first phone call between the two leaders since July 2022 and the first conversation between the two since the meeting they held in November last year in San Francisco and on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum summit (APEC).

The objective of Bidenaccording to the White House, was “do a check” with Xi in an attempt to keep the two powers in contact and prevent an incident from leading to a crisis with unpredictable consequences, a senior US official explained to the press.

With that objective in mind, the US Government announced that the Secretary of the TreasureJanet Yellen, will pay a visit to China from April 3 to 9, while the Foreign Minister, Antony Blinken, will do so in the coming weeks, although the exact date of his visit has not been specified.

Senior officials of the Chinese Executive are also expected to travel to the United States and “soon“There will be a phone call between the two defense officials, something that becomes especially important after the two powers reopened their military communication channels at the end of the year.

The call lasted one hour and 45 minutes and was “frank” and “constructive“John Kirby, one of the White House spokespersons, explained in a press conference.

Friction in technology, TikTok and fentanyl

The Chinese government also characterized the call as positive for global stability, although Xi made clear his discomfort with the restrictions that Biden has imposed on the export of American technology to China for the development of artificial intelligence or in the area of ​​semiconductors.

According to the Chinese state agency Xinhua, Xi notified Biden that his Government “It is not reducing risks but creating them” with its technological restrictions and warned that China “will not sit idly“if Washington insists on continuing to suppress the”legitimate right to development”.

In addition, both leaders talked about TikTok and the attempts by the United States Congress to pass a law that would force the Chinese company that owns that social network, ByteDanceto sell operations in the United States to protect American national security, as there are concerns that Beijing will use it for spying.

The White House confirmed that this topic was part of the conversation and explained that Biden reiterated to Xi their concerns about TikTok being Chinese owned.

Another of the thorny issues that both leaders addressed was fentanyl, a powerful opioid that claims the lives of almost 200 Americans a day and whose precursors are manufactured in China and then exported to Mexico, from where fentanyl is trafficked to the United States.

Specifically, according to the White House, Biden He urged Xi to do more so that these precursor chemicals cannot be exported to other countries.

Taiwan and the South China Sea

Likewise, the two leaders spoke about Taiwan just as the island’s president-elect and current vice president, William Lai (Lai Ching-te), is scheduled to take power on May 20, who has promised to safeguard the de facto independence of which enjoy that territory that China claims as its own.

According to the White House, Biden took the opportunity to reiterate his respect for the principle of “one china” that Beijing imposes as the basis of its ties with any country and that means that the only Chinese government that Washington must recognize is the one based in Beijing, which distances it from Taiwan’s independence aspirations.

In his response, Xi reminded Biden that Taiwan remains the “first red line that should not be crossed” and emphasized that Beijing will not tolerate any separatist activity on the island and neither will the “indulgence and external support“, alluding to the large amount of military aid that Washington delivers to that territory, Xinhua reports.

Biden also conveyed to Xi concerns about China’s operations in the South China Sea, including the clashes that the Asian giant has engaged in with the Philippines, whose president, Ferdinand Marcos Jr., will visit the White House next week.

The American leader will also then host Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida for a joint summit in which China is expected to be the central topic.

Source: Gestion

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