Top officials from China and the United States will meet next week in Alaska, marking the first high-level in-person contact between the U.S. and China under the Biden administration. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan will meet with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Politburo Member Yang Jiechi, in what Blinken called "an important opportunity to lay out in frank terms many concerns the U.S. has with Beijing's actions." Expected areas of cooperation are climate change and the reopening of consulates in Texas and Sichuan.
Prior to the meeting, the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, also known as the Quad, gathered this Friday for their first-ever meeting since the security forum's re-establishment in 2017. The forum, which is composed of the U.S., Australia, India and Japan, outlined plans to increase production of the coronavirus vaccine in India and addressed strategies for pushing back against China's growing assertiveness in the Asia-Pacific region. When asked about the meeting, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Zhao Lijian urged the Quad to "refrain from forming closed and exclusive 'cliques'" and "undermining the interests of any third party."
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that the fact that Biden made the meeting "one of his earliest multilateral engagements speaks to the importance we place on close cooperation with our allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific." Read more on the two countries' developing relations in Phone Call Diplomacy from Li Yan, Deputy Director of Institute of American Studies, on China-US Focus.
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