Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Saturday, February 16th, 2019

Mattis, China Leaders Strike Positive Tone on Talks

Mattis, China Leaders Strike  Positive Tone on Talks

BEIJING — U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and a string of Chinese leaders struck a positive public tone Wednesday, talking up increased military cooperation and open dialogue between the two countries despite simmering tensions and an impending trade war.
In opening comments before Mattis’ meetings with President Xi Jinping and Defense Minister Wei Fenghe, the leaders avoided any mention of the topics that have recently dominated the relationship and likely ate up significant portions of the talks -- Taiwan, Chinese militarization of the South China Sea and the ongoing negotiations with North Korea to end its nuclear program.
Instead, they focused on the importance of the U.S.-China military relationship and how to continue that momentum.
“This is an important time in the history of China and the United States as we work our way forward,” Mattis said as he sat with Xi in front of a bank of cameras and photographers prior to their private meeting. “It reminds me just how important this is for both of our nations. So I’m here to keep our relationship on a great trajectory, going in the right direction, and to share ideas with your leadership, your military leadership, as we look at the way ahead.”
A description of Mattis’ morning meeting with Wei, put out by China’s official People’s Daily, said the Chinese defense minister laid out Beijing’s position and concerns on Taiwan, the South China Sea and North Korea, but provided no details.
And it said Wei reiterated China’s standard line on insisting on peaceful development and the military’s “unswerving” commitment to national sovereignty, security and development interests. (AP)