Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday arrived the United States for his first visit in six years, just after a thinly vieled swipe at Beijing by US State Secretary Antony Blinken stressing on the need for freedoms and rule of law. Xi will meet US President Joe Biden on Wednesday at an undisclosed location in San Francisco after which he would attend the annual summit of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) forum, reported Guardian.
The Xi-Biden summit will be the first in-person meeting between the two leaders in a year and has been termed by US officials as an opportunity to reduce friction in what many see as the world’s most dangerous rivalry.
Xi waved from atop a passenger staircase attached to his Air China plane after which he descended on the tarmac to meet US officials including treasury secretary Janet Yellen and US ambassador to China Nicholas Burns. Later, he got into his Chinese Hongqi, or “Red Flag”, limousine and departed the airport into the city.
Biden had earlier said that the goals of the talks between the two leaders will aim at improving the US-China relationship after a period of strained ties, the report added. The US President said that he would seek to normalise communication between the two countries, inlcuding military-to-military contacts.
Biden and Xi would also discuss the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza and the efforts by the US to support Ukraine in its battle to repel Russian invaders, White House national security spokesperson John Kirby told reporters, as per the Guardian report.
Democratic senator Ben Cardin has urged Biden to raise the issue of immediate release of Mark Swidan, Kai Li and David Lin, whom the US government has classified as wrongfully detained in China. The demand has been raised by other Democrats and Republicans as well.
“With the holiday season approaching, and the opportunity to start the New Year on a more positive note in bilateral US-China relationships, I implore you to secure commitments from president Xi to release these Americans immediately,” Cardin wrote.