China provides the United States with conditions for improving relations

NSHina’s deputy foreign minister, Xie Feng, read to his American interlocutor the catalog of demands that his boss had already traveled to Alaska in March. The United States should lift all sanctions against Chinese officials, withdraw the extradition request against Huawei director Meng Wanzhou, allow China’s Confucius Institutes and US state media to operate freely, and lift visa restrictions on Communist Party members and students of certain disciplines. These are the basic requirements for normalizing relations with America, said Xie Feng after meeting with US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman in the Chinese port city of Tianjin.

Frederic Pogue

Political correspondent for China, North Korea and Mongolia.

Admittedly, no one expected that at the end of Sherman’s trip to China there would be tangible results. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs had stated that the aim of the meeting was to “keep channels of communication open at a high level.” A senior US State Department official has previously said the talks are important to “reduce the risk of misunderstanding” and establish “protective bars” so that competition with China does not drift into conflict. So expectations weren’t high when Sherman landed in Tianjin on Sunday. Her interlocutors invited her there because no political delegations are currently received in the Chinese capital due to the epidemic.

Sherman is the second high-ranking representative of President Joe Biden’s government to travel to China, after Special Envoy for Climate Change John Kerry. At best, your visit is an intermediate step for Biden’s first meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping. In Beijing, the G20 summit in Italy at the end of October was mentioned as a possible date.

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After Xie Feng, Sherman met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. He had already announced that he wanted to teach America a lesson. “If the United States has not yet learned to treat other nations as equals, it is our duty to give the United States a seminar on this subject.” Yang Jiechi set the tone in Alaska in March. At the time he gave a 16-minute lecture to Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Security Adviser Jake Sullivan.

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