President Joe Biden assured Asian leaders that U.S. competition with China would not “veer into conflict” Sunday as Japan accused Chinese leader Xi Jinping of infringing on its sovereignty.
Biden is meeting with leaders from across Asia this week while attending the G20 summit in Indonesia. He is schedule to meet in-person with Xi on Wednesday, their first face-to-face conversation since Biden gained office. Tensions between China and the U.S. and its allies have risen in recent years, with the eastern power growing increasingly aggressive toward Taiwan and Japan.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida accused China of “continuously and increasingly” infringing on its sovereignty on Sunday, according to Reuters.
Chinese fishing and naval vessels have frequently ventured into Japanese waters in recent months.
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Biden and Xi are expected to discuss efforts on how they will deepen lines of communication between Washington and Beijing as tension between the two nations remains high, the White House said Thursday.
They will also address how to “responsibly manage competition” and will “work together where our interests align,” particularly on geopolitical challenges that effect the global community.
U.S.-China tension are at their worst regarding Taiwan, which China has repeatedly threatened to take by force. Taiwan split from mainland China in 1949 after Democratic forces lost a civil war to the Chinese Communist Party and fled to the island.
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Biden’s administration has adopted a policy of “strategic ambiguity” on whether the U.S. would intervene militarily if China invaded the island. Biden himself has repeatedly stated that the U.S. would do so, but other members of his administration have also repeatedly walked back his statements.
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Japan has joined the U.S. in urging the defense of Taiwan as a Democratic country, however, and the U.S. is bound by alliance to join into any conflict should Japan be attacked.