Chinese State Media Hails Trump, Xi Meeting

Violet Tucker
April 20, 2017

While the world's attention was focussed on the U.S. missile strikes on Syria, Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping quietly wrapped up their first round of meetings on Friday that the American side described as "positive and productive".

United States officials said President Donald J. Trump's first meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping this week was an opportunity for the leaders of the world's two largest economies to get to know each other and set up future meetings.

Following the summit, President Xi agreed to work on a 100-day plan for trade talks aimed at boosting U.S. exports and reducing China's trade surplus with the United States.

Xinhua, China's official news agency, said Xi had invited Trump to make a state visit to China in 2017 and that the U.S. president had "accepted the invitation with pleasure, and hoped to make the trip at an early date".

Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said that the two sides agreed to a "100-day plan" aimed at increasing USA exports to China and reducing the trade deficit with the country.

The Global Times tabloid said the meeting "served as an indicator that the China-US relationship is still very much on course since the Trump administration took office in January", and it was likely the two nations would develop a more "pragmatic relationship".

The timing of the attacks sends a message to the Chinese Trump telling the Financial Times days before Xi's arrival that he is prepared to go it alone on North Korea if China doesn't work with the USA to crack down on North Korea's nuclear programme Military options against North Korea are much riskier than those against Syria.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, seeking assurances of USA protection, was an early visitor to both the White House and Trump's Florida resort Mar-a-Lago.

The meeting is of "unique significance" to the development of China-US relations, said President Jinping. Trump could be seen chatting and gesturing to Xi, who did the same.

Mr. Trump also expected Mr. Xi to "step up" and help rein in North Korea. "We have engaged in deeper understanding, and have built a trust", said Xi. North Korea was discussed but there was no agreement.

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North Korea, an item that featured high on the agenda of the Xi-Trump summit, was perhaps one such issue for which Xi would have preferred a touch and go approach, if not avoid altogether.

Beijing's first notable success was when Mr. Trump promised Mr. Xi over the phone that he would abide by the "one China" policy after all.

"China insists on realizing the denuclearization of the peninsula, insists on maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula, and advocates resolving the problem through peaceful means", Xi was quoted as saying.

While Beijing has condemned the missile tests, it has hesitated to take dramatic action against Pyongyang, fearing that the country's collapse would generate a flood of refugees across its borders and leave the U.S. military on its doorstep.

Despite concerns, the relationship between China and the United States has moved in many directions and expanded mutual ties. "Russian Federation should ask themselves, .Why are we supporting this murderous regime that is committing mass murder of its own population?"

The comments were made by a Foreign Ministry official and carried by North Korea's state-run Korean Central News Agency on Sunday.

"In fact, I think the outside exaggerates the sort of role China can play". China has every incentive to address these issues in a way that, while not selling out its own interests, appeals to Trump's conception of fair treatment.

Ahead of the summit, Trump signed a pair of executive orders focused on reducing the US trade deficit.

"It has been a typical tactic of the send a strong political message by attacking other countries using advanced warplanes and cruise missiles", Xinhua wrote in reference to prior US strikes in Libya and Sudan, the Times wrote.

Xi also hailed military to military exchanges and said China and the United States should "make good use of the dialogue mechanism to be established between the two countries' joint staffs of the armed forces", although Xinhua did not give further details. "We'll be making a lot of additional progress", Trump said after talks with Xi at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. It was the first direct USA assault on the Russian-backed government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in six years of civil war.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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