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US Secretary of State sees China as a 'significant challenge'
Image Credit: SecretaryAntony Blinken Instagram page

US Secretary of State sees China as a 'significant challenge'

| @indiablooms | 03 Feb 2021, 08:48 pm

Washington: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said China poses the most significant challenge to the nation than any other country.

"There’s no doubt that China poses the most significant challenge to us of any other country, but it’s a complicated one," the US top official told Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC Andrea Mitchell Reports.

He said: "There are adversarial aspects to the relationship, there’s certainly competitive ones, and there're still some cooperative ones, too.  But whether we’re dealing with any of those aspects of the relationship, we have to be able to approach China from a position of strength, not weakness."

Speaking on the treatment given by China on people from Hong Kong and towards Uyghurs, he said: "And that strength, I think, comes from having strong alliances, something China does not have; actually engaging in the world and showing up in these international institutions, because we when pull back, China fills in and then they’re the ones writing the rules and setting the norms of these institutions; standing up for our values when China is challenging them, including in Xinjiang against the Uyghurs or democracy in Hong Kong; making sure that our military is postured so that it can deter Chinese aggression; and investing in our own people so that they can fully compete."

He said: "In many ways, the challenge posed by China is as much about some of our own self-inflicted weaknesses as it is about China’s emerging strength.  But we can address those weaknesses.  We can actually build back better in this area too when it comes to stronger alliances, when it comes to engaging in the world, standing up for our values, investing in our people, making sure our military is properly postured."

He said China should be transparent about COVID-19.

"There is no doubt that, especially when COVID-19 first hit but even today, China is falling far short of the mark when it comes to providing the information necessary to the international community, making sure that experts have access to China.  All of the – that lack of transparency, that lack of being forthcoming, is a profound problem and it’s one that continues," the US Secretary of State said.

"And so as we’re thinking about both dealing with this pandemic but also making sure we’re in a position to prevent the next one, China has to step up and make sure that it is being transparent, that it is providing information and sharing information, that it is giving access to international experts and inspectors.  Its failure to do that is a real problem that we have to address," he said.

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