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Secretary Tillerson Meets with Chinese President

March 19, 2017 (EIRNS)—Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with Chinese President Xi Jinping today in the Great Hall of the People for about 20 minutes. Tillerson told Xi

“President Trump places a very high value on the communications that have already occurred between yourself and President Trump, where there were very good exchanges to improve the understanding of China’s view of the relationship with the United States, and President Trump’s view, as well.”

He expressed great appreciation for his exchanges with Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Senior Councilor Yang Jiechi. “We know that, through further dialogue, we will achieve a greater understanding that will lead to a strengthening of ties between China and the United States, and set the tone for our future relationship of cooperation.”

Tillerson also repeated the important signal phrase that he also used at his press conference with Foreign Minister Wang Yi, saying that

“The U.S. side is ready to develop relations with China based on the principle of no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation.”

This is a formulation often repeated by Chinese officials with regard to the U.S.-China relationship, and Chinese scholars commenting on the visit have underlined the importance for the Chinese side of Tillerson’s use of that formulation.

President Xi said that cooperation was the only correct choice for both countries. “There are important development opportunities resulting from China-U.S. relations,” Xi said.

“The two sides should grasp the general direction for the development of China-U.S. relations in an attitude that is responsible to history and future generations.”

Xi noted the two positive discussions and the three letters he had sent to President Trump.

“To advance China-U.S. ties in a healthy and steady manner, both sides could enhance exchanges at high level and various levels, expand cooperation in bilateral, regional and global fields, and properly address and manage sensitive issues.... The two countries should also enhance coordination on regional hotspot issues, respect each other’s core interests and major concerns and encourage friendly exchanges between the two peoples,”

Xi said. President Xi also invited President Trump to pay a visit to China. Tillerson also conveyed that President Trump is anticipating that the two will soon be able to meet face-to-face for discussions that will chart the course for future U.S.-China relations.