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Joe Biden and Xi Jinping hold virtual summit

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US President Joe Biden opened his virtual meeting with China’s Xi Jinping by saying their goal is to ensure competition “does not veer into conflict”.

The two leaders are meeting by video amid mounting tensions in the US-China relationship.

Mr Biden has criticised Beijing over human rights abuses against Uyghurs in northwest China, curbing democratic protests in Hong Kong, military aggression against the self-ruled island of Taiwan and more.

Mr Xi’s deputies, meanwhile, have lashed out against the Biden White House for interfering in what it sees as internal Chinese matters.

“It seems to be our responsibility as the leaders of China and the United States to ensure that the competition between our countries does not veer into conflict, whether intended or unintended, rather than simple, straightforward competition,” Mr Biden said at the start of the meeting.

“I stand ready to work with you, Mr President, to build consensus, take active steps and move China-US relations forward in a positive direction,” said Mr Xi, who called Mr Biden his “old friend”.

The US president was joined in the Roosevelt Room for the video call by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, national security adviser Jake Sullivan and national security aides Kurt Campbell, Laura Rosenberger and Jon Czin. Continue Reading

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