Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday as he wrapped up a 2-day trip to Beijing. While a meeting between Washington's top diplomat and the Chinese leader was highly anticipated, neither side confirmed the talks until an hour before they occurred. The meeting has widely been seen as the key marker of success for Blinken's visit.
Earlier on Monday China had told the U.S. that Washington must choose between "cooperation or conflict" with Beijing as diplomatic relations between the two nations have continued to deteriorate in recent months amid differing views of the ongoing war in Ukraine and the controversial takedown of a Chinese spy balloon over American territory in February.
Wang Yi, China's top foreign policy official, told Secretary of State Antony Blinken what the terms and conditions for the meeting would be when the two spoke for 3 hours on Monday.
According to a readout from Chinese state broadcaster CCTV Wang told Blinken, "The Secretary of State's trip to Beijing this time comes at a critical juncture in China-U.S. relations."
"It is necessary to make a choice between dialogue and confrontation, cooperation or conflict," Wang added.
"We must reverse the downward spiral of China-U.S. relations, push for a return to a healthy and stable track, and work together to find a correct way for China and the United States to get along," he continued.
Wang also issued a warning regarding Taiwan saying, "On this issue, China has no room to compromise or concede."
"The United States must truly adhere to the One China principle confirmed in the three joint U.S.-China communique, respect China's sovereignty and territorial integrity, and clearly oppose "Taiwan independence'," Wang concluded.
Blinken's visit to Beijing this week comes after he canceled a planned trip in February due to the Chinese spy balloon incident. China then refused to allow Blinken to reschedule the trip until recently.
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