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Blinken Seeks To Initiate Gradual Reset In China-US Relations


MNI London: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will become first top US diplomat to visit Beijing since 2018 when he travels to China Feb 5-6.

  • Observers are managing expectations ahead of a trip designed to reset Sino-US relations following a prolonged period of deterioration which escalated with former Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) Taiwan trip in August.
  • A reset is complicated by hawkish comments from the US military on Chinese posture towards Taiwan and the Biden administration's desire to economically de-couple from China in areas of national security.
  • The US has prodded Japan and the Netherlands to join US-led export controls, set to straggle China’s competitiveness in advanced AI and military tech. The US has also publicly rejected a WTO ruling in favour of China.
  • Blinken is likely to press for a backdoor agreement to resolve Taiwan tensions and push Beijing on alleged collaboration between Chinese companies and Russia.
  • There have been modest signs of a thaw since President Xi’s diplomatic blitz in November. China has removed so-called Wolf-Warriors from prominent diplomatic postings and elevated US ambassador, Qin Gang, to Foreign Minister, taken as a sign Beijing wants to stabilise relations.

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