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US and Chinese presidents agree on meeting in November

The details on the exact date and venue are yet to be worked out, but two leaders are “working toward” a meeting at the APEC summit in November 2023.
China’s President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden meet on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Bali, 2022.
US and Chinese presidents agree on meeting in November

US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping have agreed to hold a face-to-face meeting next month on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco, AP reported, citing US officials.

The official said both sides worked out an agreement in principle for the meeting during talks between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday.

While details on the exact date are still being finalized, the White House confirmed in a statement that the two leaders are “working toward” a meeting at the APEC summit, a forum of 21 Pacific Rim countries taking place 11-17 November 2023.

Earlier Friday on 27 October, Biden met with Wang, holding an hourlong talk with the senior Chinese official in the Roosevelt Room at the White House. The meeting, with Blinken and Sullivan present, was the latest in a series of high-level contacts between the two countries as they explore “the possibility of stabilizing an increasingly tense relationship at a time of conflict in Ukraine and Israel.”

Ties between the two countries have been strained in recent years over issues like trade, human rights, Taiwan and China’s claims in the South China Sea. Supporters will be hoping the face-to-face conversation can help get relations back on track.

While China has officially stated it remains neutral and has called for a diplomatic solution to the war in Ukraine, it has declined to condemn Russia’s invasion. At the same time, Beijing has maintained close ties with Moscow amid the war.

China’s economic support is seen as important for Russia as Western sanctions have isolated the Russian economy. However, the extent and nature of China’s economic assistance to Russia remains unclear.

China has repeatedly criticized Western sanctions on Russia but has also been careful not to violate the restrictions itself. Beijing has said it promotes peace talks and encourages all parties to exercise restraint. It has called for respecting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries. However, it has stopped short of telling Moscow to withdraw its forces from Ukraine.

Biden and Xi last met in person at November’s G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia. Their previous in-person meeting was in 2017 when Biden was vice president.

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