US Ambassador Expects Friday "Frank" Dialogue with China

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – One can expect a "frank" exchange of views on Friday in diplomatic and security talks between the United States and China, including on issues such as human rights and human rights issues. man and the South China Sea, the US ambassador to China. I said.

FILE PHOTO: US Ambassador Terry Edward Branstad (left) shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping (Ranger) at the Great Hall of the People on September 30, 2017 in Beijing, China. REUTERS / Zhang Lintao / Pool / Photo File

Terry Branstad told reporters at the State Department Thursday that the United States would seek progress on priority issues, including North Korea, and that there would also be discussions on strategic security. and how to "avoid mistakes or accidents that may occur on the military scene". . "

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis will participate in talks in Washington with Chinese politburo member Yang Jiechi and Defense Minister Wei Fenghe. They should have been held in Beijing in October but were delayed due to mounting trade tensions in Taiwan and the South China Sea.

While the focus is on diplomacy and security, efforts to resolve a damaging trade war between the two countries should be discussed before the scheduled meeting between US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G20 in Argentina at the end of November.

"We want this relationship with China to be constructive and results-oriented," Branstad said. "The United States is not trying to contain China, but we want fairness and reciprocity."

China and the US have imposed tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of goods and Trump has threatened to set tariffs on the rest of Chinese exports exceeding $ 500 billion to the United States if the dispute could not be resolved.

The resumption of the high-level dialogue, marked by a phone call between the presidents last week, raised some hopes, but the Trump government also accused China of interfering in US politics, accusing China of denying with force. The two men also quarreled with the South China Sea and Taiwan Highway, which China claims.

Washington has also increasingly criticized the Chinese treatment of religious minorities, including Uyghur Muslims in western Xinjiang.

"The Diplomatic and Security Dialogue is a forum for a frank and open exchange of views on a wide range of issues from the South China Sea to human rights," Branstad said.

He referred to Beijing's cooperation on various international issues, which he called "a very important player" in bringing North Korea back to the negotiations.

Discussions are also expected on Friday over the US plan to resign from the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia, which has caused concern among the Chinese that could lead to the establishment of missiles based in the United States. United States in Asia.

Xi Jinping said Thursday that China wanted to solve the problems through negotiations, but that Washington must respect the choice of development path and Beijing's interests.

China's Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that Yang Jiechi had met with US National Security Advisor John Bolton and said the two sides should "properly handle the differences and prepare carefully to ensure a positive outcome at the meeting. in Argentina".

"China is determined to work with the United States to achieve cooperation without confrontation, conflict and mutual respect in which both sides win," Yang said.

Report by David Brunnstrom and Lesley Wroughton, edited by Rosalba O & # 39; Brien

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