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2 Feb, 2021 09:10

Top Chinese diplomat urges US to stop meddling into Beijing’s affairs, advocates mending ties

Top Chinese diplomat urges US to stop meddling into Beijing’s affairs, advocates mending ties

Beijing and Washington should put their relations back on a constructive track, a top Chinese diplomat has said, urging the US to abandon its “major-power rivalry” mentality and stop interferring in the country’s domestic affairs.

Yang Jiechi, the director of the Central Foreign Affairs Commission of the Chinese Communist Party, shared his vision for US-China relations on Tuesday. The senior diplomat appeared at an online forum held by the National Committee on US-China Relations, a major US-based nonprofit promoting cooperation between the two countries.

While assuring that Beijing is not seeking to challenge the US’ position in the world, Yang called upon Washington to stop meddling in the country’s internal affairs.

The United States should stop interfering in Hong Kong, Tibet, Xinjiang and other issues regarding China’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

Yang is the latest – and, arguably, the most influential – high-ranking Chinese official in recent days to have urged Washington to abandon Donald Trump’s policies as soon as possible. While the recent change in US leadership prompted hopes for reproach between the two countries, the first days of the President Joe Biden administration were marred by discord around Taiwan, which Beijing regards as an integral part of the country.

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The tensions soared after a Taiwan flyover by China’s military aircraft, including heavy bombers, which was described by the island’s military as an “incursion.” The Chinese activities prompted a strong response from the US, which reiterated its “rock-solid” commitment to the island’s “self-defense capability.”

China is ready to work with the US to develop a relationship of “no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation,” Yang stated. He also warned Washington’s new administration against overusing the national security concept in the sphere of trade, which repeatedly occurred under former president Trump, who engaged in a bitter trade war with Beijing.

“We in China hope that the United States will rise above the outdated mentality of zero-sum, major-power rivalry and work with China to keep the relationship on the right track,” the diplomat stated.

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Despite the ongoing tensions around Taiwan, the new US administration has already sent some reconciliatory signals to Beijing. Last week, for instance, it dropped certain Trump-era restrictions, once again allowing most US investments in companies directly owned or controlled by the Chinese military.

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