Xi Jinping ignores reporter question about trust in Biden
Biden and Xi meet at the Filoli estate in California to ease tensions, but their relationship is under pressure.
ABC News Senior White House Correspondent Selina Wang was present at the meeting between Biden and Xi at the Filoli estate in Woodside, California, on Wednesday afternoon. This was the first face-to-face meeting between the world leaders in a year, and it was scheduled on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco. The purpose of the meeting was to focus on ways to ease the growing tensions between Washington and Beijing.
During the meeting, Wang posed a question to Xi in Mandarin, asking the Chinese leader, "Do you trust Biden?" Xi took out his translation earpiece to hear the question but did not respond, according to Wang's report.
The U.S. and China are expected to discuss several areas during the APEC summit where they have long had conflicting interests, including Taiwan, influence in the South China Sea, and ongoing conflicts between Russia-Ukraine and Israel-Hamas. Both Biden and Xi acknowledged that their countries have not always gotten along, but they emphasized the importance of reaching a compromise.
Biden stressed that competition between the U.S. and China must not lead to conflict and that both leaders are responsible for maintaining their relationship. Xi agreed, stating that the U.S.-China relationship is the most important bilateral relationship in the world.
This year's summit between Biden and Xi is off to a stronger start than the November 2022 meeting in Bali, Indonesia, which took place after China suspended communications with the U.S. in response to then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan. However, Biden is facing pressure from Republican lawmakers ahead of the APEC over fears that he may be too lenient on Xi.
Senator Jim Risch and 22 GOP Senators sent a letter to Biden, urging him not to give an inch on U.S. policy on Taiwan and to ensure that Taiwan has the capabilities and training it needs to deter Chinese aggression.
Overall, the meeting between Biden and Xi is a significant step in addressing the tensions between the U.S. and China, and both leaders have expressed a willingness to work towards a compromise and maintain a responsible relationship.