The two leaders held private discussions about trade, sanctions, and Taiwan—topics that have strained ties between the two for years
In their first meeting in a year, US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping shook hands and promised to keep their nations out of conflict.
Relations between the two countries have significantly deteriorated in the past years due to Washington’s increasingly hostile policies against Beijing and its encroaching on its geopolitical sphere, particularly regarding Taiwan.
The two leaders held private discussions about trade, sanctions, and Taiwan—topics that have strained ties between the two for years.
Biden began his speech by stating that tensions should “not veer into conflict.” He added that the meetings have always been “candid and straightforward and useful,” adding that the two leaders should understand each other “with no misconceptions or miscommunication. We have to ensure that competition does not veer into conflict.”
Xi echoed similar concerns, citing that “conflict and confrontation have unbearable consequences for both sides” and that for large nations like China and the US, “turning their back on each other is not an option.”
“Planet Earth is big enough for the two countries to succeed.”
US officials have stated that the main reason for the meeting is the restoration of “predictability” to the relationship between both countries.
One of the most contentious issues remains the issue of Taiwan, the island that Beijing claims sovereignty over and that the US has been hyping up with military aid.
Before the meeting, White House National Security Council Spokesperson John Kirby told reporters, “We do not want to see the tensions across the Taiwan Strait evolve into any kind of conflict.”
Xi and Biden were also expected to speak about the current situation in Palestine, while Russia called the meeting between both leaders “important for everyone.”
During a recent UN Security Council meeting, China’s representative Zhang Jun urged “Israel” to immediately lift the Gaza blockade and ensure the unrestricted flow of essential supplies to the region, particularly fuel to humanitarian and medical facilities.