Relations between the countries have deteriorated sharply under Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump
Tianjin (China): American deputy secretary of state Wendy Sherman arrived in China on Monday to discuss the fraught relationship between the countries with two top foreign ministry officials. She is the highest-ranking US official to visit China since President Joe Biden took office six months ago.
Sherman will hold separate meetings with Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng, who is in charge of U.S.-China relations, and Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a closed-off resort hotel in the city of Tianjin. These meetings follow an initial and highly contentious meeting in March in Anchorage, Alaska, where Wang and veteran Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi flew to meet Secretary of State Antony Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan.
Relations between the countries have deteriorated sharply under Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, and the two sides remain at odds over a host of issues, including technology, cybersecurity, and human rights.
Meanwhile, squarely blaming the US for what it called a “stalemate” in bilateral relations, in an interview on Saturday, Foreign Minister Wang accused the U.S. of adopting a superior attitude and using its strength to pressure other countries.
“China would never accept any country that claims to be superior to others,” he told China’s Phoenix Television. “If the U.S. has not learned to treat other countries equally, China and the international community have the responsibility to help the U.S. learn how to do this,” he added.
Biden administration officials have said the goal of the talks is not to negotiate specific issues but to keep high-level communications channels open. The U.S. wants to ensure that guardrails are in place to prevent competition between the countries from becoming conflict, they said.
A possible meeting between Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to be on the agenda, possibly on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Rome at the end of October.