China-US ties affected by some negative factors: Xi to Trump

US-China Relations Deteriorate

China's leader Xi Jinping said that ties with the USA have been strained by "some negative factors" in a telephone conversation with President Donald Trump Sunday.

In his call with Xi, "President Trump raised the growing threat posed by North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programmes", the White House said.

Ruan Zongze, vice-president of the China Institute of International Studies, said the U.S.arms sales to Taiwan "obviously breach U.S.commitments" in the three key statements, while interfering with China's domestic affairs and sending misleading signals to those who seek Taiwan independence.

The conversation took place before the two presidents meet in Germany for this year's two-day Group of 20 summit starting Friday.

But Xi also took the opportunity of the call to make his feelings known, requesting the United States "handle the Taiwan issue appropriately", according to a Chinese statement.

"The recent criticism and actions are all unreasonable, but the US always harasses China in this way", he says.

USA sanctions against a Chinese bank over dealings with North Korea and the sailing of a US destroyer close to a Chinese-claimed island in the South China Sea.

Many took these moves as evidence of the U.S. pursuing a harder line on the Asian superpower, likely caused by mounting frustration over a perceived lack of action by Beijing to contain North Korea.

Editor's Remarks: The recent US-China Dialogue meeting in Washington does not seem to have gone well and talks between the US and Chinese Presidents at the G20 summit this week could turn frosty.


Suga said that during their 35-minute phone conversation, the two leaders reaffirmed close coordination between their countries and South Korea in stepping up pressure on North Korea.

Other U.S. decisions have recently drawn criticism from China.

Cheng Xiaohe, an associate professor of global relations at Renmin University in Beijing, said that given the recent actions by Mr Trump, it was "a little bit odd" that Mr Xi had agreed to the phone call.

Trump decided in late June to consider tougher sanctions against a dozen or so Chinese companies and individuals helping North Korean companies involved in the weapons development programs, according to a US government source. Since then, Trump has frequently praised Xi on Twitter for his help reining in North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's nuclear program. The Chinese foreign ministry branded the United States foray "a serious political and military provocation" and reported that Chinese warships and fighter planes were sent to warn off the USA destroyer.

The Trump administration is rapidly adopting a more confrontational stance toward China across the board.

The US also sold €860 million worth of arms to regional rival Taiwan, and imposed unilateral sanctions against a small Chinese bank, the Bank of Dandong, over its dealings with North Korea.

On Sunday, the U.S. navy conducted its second so-called freedom of navigation operation in less than six weeks to challenge Chinese sovereignty in the South China Sea.

Amid the tensions, North Korea has continued to stridently defend its weapons program.

China is suspected by Washington of seeking to establish by force its demands by building military facilities in the archipelagos of Paracels and Spratleys.

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