Blinken meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing


(BEIJING) — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing on Monday at 4:30 p.m. local time, according to an official with the U.S. Department of State.

The meeting comes amid soaring tensions between the United States and China, fueling concerns that the two counties could break out into conflict.

“State-to-state interactions should always be based on mutual respect and sincerity. I hope that Secretary Blinken, through this visit, could make positive contribution to stabilizing China-U.S. relations,” Xi said in opening remarks to Blinken before their closed-door meeting, according to Chinese state media.

Blinken, America’s top diplomat, arrived in the Chinese capital on Sunday for an official two-day visit aimed at easing tensions. He is the first U.S. secretary of state to visit China in five years and the highest-level U.S. official to make the trip since President Joe Biden took office.

On the first day of his high-stakes trip, Blinken met with Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang for nearly six hours and, afterwards, both sides said they had agreed to continue high-level discussions, with Qin accepting an invitation from Blinken to visit Washington, D.C. However, behind closed doors, Qin told Blinken that China-U.S. ties “are at the lowest point since the establishment of diplomatic relations,” according to Chinese state media.

Earlier Monday, Blinken met with China’s top diplomat Wang Yi for about three hours.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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