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Biden lays out 'prescription' for U.S.-China relations in first call with Xi Jinping since taking office

President Biden committed to pursuing practical, results-oriented engagements when it advances the interests of the American people and those of our allies,” the White House said”

President Biden spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping for the first time Wednesday night since taking office, outlining his administration’s "core concerns" with China’s "practices, aggressive activities and abuses," signaling a "clear and consistent subscription to American values," while discussing areas in which the administration believes it could be in the United States’ national interest to work with Beijing, senior administration officials said.

 

In a statement Wednesday night, the White House said Biden "shared his greetings and well wishes with the Chinese people on the occasion of Lunar New Year."

 

"President Biden affirmed his priorities of protecting the American people’s security, prosperity, health, and way of life, and preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific," the White House said. "President Biden underscored his fundamental concerns about Beijing’s coercive and unfair economic practices, crackdown in Hong Kong, human rights abuses in Xinjiang, and increasingly assertive actions in the region, including toward Taiwan."

 

The White House said Biden and Xi "also exchanged views on countering the COVID-19 pandemic, and the shared challenges of global health security, climate change, and preventing weapons proliferation."

 

"President Biden committed to pursuing practical, results-oriented engagements when it advances the interests of the American people and those of our allies," the White House said.

 

Senior administration officials before the call Wednesday night said that Biden would lay down the "range of concerns" he has with China’s actions and policies while ensuring that the two leaders keep "an open line of communication."