Top Chinese diplomat to meet with US national security adviser

Meeting in Zurich to discuss China-US relations, related issues, says local media

ANKARA (AA) – Yang Jiechi, director of the Foreign Affairs Commission Office of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), will meet with US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan on Wednesday in Zurich, Switzerland, local media outlets reported.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said in a statement that Yang will meet with Sullivan in accordance with the consensus reached during a Sept. 10 phone call between the Chinese and US leaders, according to Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

Hua said China-US relations and related issues will be discussed at the meeting.

Yang, who is also a member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, is above the foreign minister in seniority and considered the country’s top diplomat.

It is noteworthy that Yang and Sullivan’s meeting coincides with a period of tensions between the US and China due to trade issues and China’s numerous military flights into an area designated by Taiwan as its air defense identification zone.

Trade issues

US Foreign Trade Representative Katherine Tai stressed during a meeting she attended on Oct. 4 at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) headquartered in Washington, D.C. that the terms of the Phase 1 trade deal reached between Washington and Beijing at the beginning of 2020 to suspend mutual increases in customs tariffs should be fulfilled.

Tai also said that the US continues to have concerns about China’s state-based and non-market trade practices that are not covered in the Phase 1 trade agreement, and they will convey this to their Chinese interlocutors during the negotiations.

Taiwan issue

The entry of Chinese military planes into Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) on Oct. 1, the anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, and in the following days has raised tensions in the region.

On Oct. 1, China celebrates National Day, which marks the formation of the People’s Republic of China, and over three days, a total of 93 aircraft violated the ADIZ.

Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said 38 aircraft entered the zone on Oct. 1, 39 on Oct. 2 and 16 on Oct. 3.

China claims Taiwan as a “breakaway province,” while Taipei has insisted on its independence since 1949.

Taiwan defines the ADIZ as an area that extends beyond its air space where air traffic controllers ask incoming aircraft to identify themselves.

Four more Chinese warplanes were spotted cruising in Taiwan’s air defense zone overnight after 52 military aircraft belonging to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) recently entered the region, the country’s National Defense Ministry reported early Tuesday.

With a total of 56 flights, it amounted to a “breach” involving the largest number of aircraft detected in a single day since September 2020, when Taiwan began keeping records.


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