President Joe Biden said China under Xi Jinping has “real problems” while speaking at an event in San Francisco on Tuesday, a day before he is set to hold a crucial summit meeting with the Chinese President in an attempt to normalize fractured ties between the two countries.
Addressing the audience at a fundraiser, Biden presented Xi as an example of “how reestablishing American leadership in the world is taking hold” and added, “They’ve [China] have got real problems,” according to AFP.
Biden did not elaborate further and it was unclear if he was referring to China’s recent economic slowdown.
Earlier on Tuesday, Biden said his primary goal for the meeting was to normalize the frayed relationship between the two world powers but said he would not shy away from confronting Xi on matters he is concerned about.
Biden said he wanted either side to be able to “pick up the phone and talk to one another if there’s a crisis,” and ensure that the two militaries are in contact with each other.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle Biden also took a swipe at his domestic rival, former President Donald Trump, at the fundraiser saying his recent “vermin” remarks were similar to the rhetoric used in Nazi Germany.
Both Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris attended a fundraiser at San Francisco’s Merchants Exchange building and met with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and the city’s mayor London Breed. Biden’s presence at the fundraiser drew a large crowd of pro-Palestinian protestors calling for a ceasefire in the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Some protesters chanted “cease-fire now” and “Genocidal Joe, he must go” while others demanded the pulling of all aid to Israel. The protestors, however, were unable to directly confront the president.
Biden and Xi’s meeting will reportedly take place at Filoli estate, a historical site and a former private residence located around 25 miles outside San Francisco. The meeting is taking place on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation leaders’ meeting in the city. The site of the meeting has not been officially disclosed for security reasons. The last face-to-face meeting between the two leaders took place at the G20 Summit in Bali almost exactly a year ago. Since then the shaky bilateral ties have taken a further hit after a 200-foot-tall Chinese spy balloon flew over Alaska and the U.S. mainland before being shot down by an F-22 fighter jet near the coast of South Carolina earlier this year. Beijing has refuted allegations that the balloon was designed to spy on sensitive U.S. facilities. The relationship has also been soured by a concerted effort by the Biden administration to limit China’s access to advanced U.S.-designed chips.
Biden says China has ‘real problems’ ahead of key US summit with Xi (AFP)
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