US and China agree to resume military communication – Baltic News Network

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Following a rare in-person meeting in California on Wednesday, the 15th of November, Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping have agreed to resume military-to-military communication in an effort to de-escalate tensions between the US and China. Biden stressed the restoration of direct, open, and clear channels of communication, reports the British media BBC.

China had cut military ties with the US last year after a visit to Taiwan by then US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

While acknowledging that differences remain,

Biden described the talks as constructive, but called Xi a dictator,

underlining the two countries’ different forms of governance. This was in line with an earlier comment by Baiden in June, which provoked a strong reaction from Chinese officials.

During the meeting, the US and China announced another major agreement to combat the flow of fentanyl from China to the US, which is contributing to the rise in overdose deaths. According to President Joe Biden, the two countries will take steps to reduce the flow of precursor chemicals and pill presses from China to the Western Hemisphere to save lives.

The two leaders also discussed the conflict in Israel and Gaza. A senior US official told reporters that Biden has asked China to use its influence with Iran to urge it not to take what could be seen as provocative steps. According to Reuters, Chinese officials informed the US side that they were engaged in discussions with Iran on regional risks.

The BBC reports that the two powers also agreed to jointly explore the possibilities of artificial intelligence (AI) and had a long conversation on Taiwan, which, according to one US official, Xi recognised as

“the biggest and most dangerous issue in US-China relations”.

According to Reuters, Xi did not mention any immediate plans for military action, but he discussed the conditions under which the use of force could be considered. However, Biden stressed the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait, calling for respect for Taiwan’s electoral process.

After the talks, China stressed that the renewed military ties were based on equality and respect. President Xi Jinping said that the success of the two countries was possible on a planet large enough for them to coexist, adding that “the success of one country is an opportunity for the other” and warned that confrontation has unbearable consequences, the BBC writes.

US officials downplayed hopes of major breakthroughs, stressing the goal of managing competition among themselves, preventing conflict and keeping channels of communication open.

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