On March 14, 2022 local time, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Director of the Office of the Central Commission for Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi met with US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan in Rome, Italy. The two sides had candid, in-depth and constructive talks on China-US relations and international and regional issues of mutual interest and concern, and agreed to follow through on the consensus reached by the heads of state of the two countries to enhance mutual understanding, manage differences, expand common ground and strengthen cooperation, and to accumulate enabling conditions for China-US relations to return to the right track of sound and steady development.
Yang Jiechi noted that implementing the consensus reached by the two heads of state is the most important task in China-US relations. President Xi Jinping proposed the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation as ways to manage China-US relations in the new era, charting the course for the development of China-US relations. President Biden responded positively, making such important commitments as not seeking a new Cold War, not seeking to change China’s system, not seeking to target the revitalization of its alliances against China, not supporting “Taiwan independence”, and having no intention to have a conflict with China. Noting that China has viewed and handled its relations with the US on the basis of the three principles put forward by President Xi, Yang Jiechi expressed the hope that the US side will follow through on the commitments made by President Biden. He emphasized that to strengthen dialogue and cooperation, properly manage differences, and avoid conflict and confrontation between China and the US under the current international situation is in line with the interests of the two peoples, the expectations of the international community and the interests of the people of the world.
Yang Jiechi stressed that the Taiwan question bears on China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. In the three China-US Joint Communiqués, the US clearly acknowledges that there is but one China. The one-China principle is the prerequisite for the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the US, and constitutes the political foundation of China-US relations. The current US administration has made a commitment on the Taiwan question to adhering to the one-China policy and not supporting “Taiwan independence”, but its recent actions are obviously not consistent with its statements. The Chinese side is gravely concerned about and firmly opposes the recent erroneous words and deeds by the US side on Taiwan-related issues. Any attempt to connive at or support the “Taiwan independence” separatist forces and to play the “Taiwan card” to “use Taiwan to contain China” will get nowhere. China urges the US to fully recognize the highly sensitive nature of the Taiwan question, strictly abide by the one-China principle, the provisions of the three China-US Joint Communiqués and the commitments made by the US, and not to go further down the road of great danger.
Yang Jiechi also stated China’s solemn position on issues related to Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong. He pointed out that these issues involve China’s core interests and are China’s internal affairs that allow no interference from external forces. Any attempt to use these issues to suppress China is doomed to fail. He noted that seeking common ground while reserving differences and building a bridge of cooperation on the basis of proper handling of differences has been proven, by our practice in the past 50 years since the release of the Shanghai Communiqué, to be the right way for China and the US to get along with each other. Both sides should draw lessons from the past, follow the principle of mutual respect as the premise to development of bilateral relations, stick to peaceful coexistence as the bottom line, and focus on win-win cooperation as the key.
The two sides also exchanged views on international and regional issues including the Ukraine issue, the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula, the Iranian nuclear issue, and the Afghan issue.