Antony Blinken’s China visit to focus on ‘avoiding conflict’ and finding shared goals

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken held “candid, substantive, and constructive” talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang in Beijing on Sunday, the US State Department said.

“The Secretary emphasised the importance of diplomacy and maintaining open channels of communication across the full range of issues to reduce the risk of misperception and miscalculation,” State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said in a statement, adding that Mr Blinken invited Mr Qin to Washington to continue discussions.

Mr Blinken raised a number of issues of “concern, as well as opportunities” to explore cooperation on shared transnational issues with China where “interests align.”

“The United States will always stand up for the interests and values of the American people and work with its allies and partners to advance our vision for a world that is free, open, and upholds the international rules-based order,” said Mr Miller.

Chinese state media reported that Mr Qin also shared Beijing’s concerns on its core interests including the Taiwan issue, describing it as the “most prominent risk” in Sino-US relations.

Mr Qin greeted Mr Blinken and his delegation at the door to a villa in the grounds of Beijing’s Diaoyutai State Guest House, rather than inside the building as is customary.

The two made small talk as they walked in, with Mr Qin asking Mr Blinken in English about his long trip from Washington. They then shook hands in front of a Chinese and an American flag.

Antony Blinken arrives in Beijing to ease strained US-China tiesAntony Blinken arrives in Beijing to ease strained US-China ties
After heading into a meeting room, neither official made comments in front of reporters who were briefly allowed in.

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