Biden looking to engage with Xi, may meet at G20 summit in October

Washington: US President Joe Biden, who met Russian President Vladimir Putin this week, will seek to engage with Chinese President Xi Jinping, and the two could meet possibly during the G20 summit in Italy in October, says National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan.

“He will look for opportunities to engage with President Xi going forward. We don’t have any particular plans at the moment, but I would note that both leaders are likely to be at the G20 in Italy in October,” US National Security Advisor Sullivan said on Thursday during a conference call about Biden’s trip to Europe.

Sullivan said the US will “soon enough” start working out the “right modality” for the two presidents to engage, which could be a phone call, a meeting on the margins of an international summit, or something else.

He said the engagement is intended to “take stock of where we are in the relationship” and to ensure that there is “a kind of direct communication” between Biden and Xi.

“So, no decisions have been made on that score. But the notion that President Biden will engage in the coming month with President Xi in some way to take stock of where we are in the relationship and to ensure that we have that kind of direct communication that we found valuable with President Putin yesterday, we’re very much committed to that,” he said, according to the transcript of the on-the-record call seen here.

“It’s now just a question of when and how. And we will work through that and have more to report.”

On the final leg of his Europe trip, Biden met Putin in Geneva, the first meeting between the two since he took office in January.

The Biden administration has said that dealing with China will be “the biggest geopolitical test” of this century.

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