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Taiwan issue is first insurmountable red line in Sino-US ties: Xi tells Biden on phone call

2 Apr 2024

Beijing [China], April 3 (ANI): In a telephonic conversation between Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden, the Taiwan issue took centre stage, with the latter urging peace in the island nation and former labelling it an "insurmountable red line in Sino-US relations".

According to the White House, President Biden underscored the necessity of preserving peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, as well as upholding the principles of the rule of law and freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.

"President Biden emphasised the importance of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and the rule of law and freedom of navigation in the South China Sea," according to a White House readout on the phone call between the two leaders.

Responding to Biden's remarks, Chinese President Xi made a resolute declaration, emphasising that the Taiwan issue represents the foremost insurmountable red line in Sino-US relations.

"Xi Jinping emphasized that the Taiwan issue is the first insurmountable red line in Sino-US relations," the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

Xi also vowed to counter any separatist activities and external support for Taiwanese independence, urging the US to translate its commitments into concrete actions.

"We will not let the separatist activities and external connivance and support of the 'Taiwan independence' forces go unchecked. We hope that the US will implement Mr. President's positive statement of not supporting 'Taiwan independence' into action," it added.

"Biden reiterated that the United States does not seek to engage in a "new Cold War", does not seek to change China's system, does not seek to strengthen alliances against China, does not support "Taiwan independence", and has no intention of conflict with China," a press release issued by the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

Xi also elaborated on China's position on Hong Kong, human rights, South China Sea and other issues.

The telephonic conversation between the two comes amid increasing tensions between both the nations on a range of thorny issues from trade to tech to investment.

According to the White House statement, the two leaders held a candid and constructive discussion on a range of bilateral, regional, and global issues, including areas of cooperation and areas of difference.

The call follows the two leaders' meeting in Woodside, California in November 2023.

"They reviewed and encouraged progress on key issues discussed at the Woodside Summit, including counternarcotics cooperation, ongoing military-to-military communication, talks to address AI-related risks, and continuing efforts on climate change and people-to-people exchanges," the statement read.

Biden also raised concerns over China's support for Russia's defence industrial base and its impact on European and transatlantic security.

"He emphasized the United States' enduring commitment to the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," the statement said.

Moreover, US President Biden highlighted continued concerns about China's unfair trade policies and non-market economic practices, harming American workers and families.

"The President emphasized that the United States will continue to take necessary actions to prevent advanced US technologies from being used to undermine our national security, without unduly limiting trade and investment," it added.

Ahead of the call, a senior administration official said that both the leaders will discuss the US-China bilateral relationship along with other various ongoing issues.

The last time, the leaders had a conversation by phone was in July 2022, reported The Hill. (ANI)

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