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Sun Mar 19, 2017, 09:45 AM

Tillerson ends China trip with warm words from President Xi

Source: Reuters



Sun Mar 19, 2017 | 9:20am EDT

By Yeganeh Torbati and Michael Martina | BEIJING

With warm words from Chinese President Xi Jinping on Sunday, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson ended his first trip to Asia since taking office with an agreement to work together with China on North Korea and putting aside trickier issues.

China has been irritated at being repeatedly told by Washington to rein in North Korea's nuclear and missile programs and the U.S. decision to base an advanced missile defense system in South Korea.

Beijing is also deeply suspicious of U.S. intentions toward self-ruled Taiwan, which China claims as its own, with the Trump administration crafting a big new arms package for the island that is bound to anger China. But meeting in Beijing's Great Hall of the People, those issues were brushed aside by Xi and Tillerson, at least in front of reporters, with Xi saying Tillerson had made a lot of efforts to achieve a smooth transition in a new era of relations.

"You said that China-U.S. relations can only be friendly. I express my appreciation for this," Xi said.


Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-tillerson-asia-china-idUSKBN16Q038



Sun Mar 19, 2017 | 6:32am EDT

Smoothly but warily, U.S. and China stick to script in Tillerson visit

By Yeganeh Torbati and Ben Blanchard | BEIJING
Despite a long list of potential pitfalls, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's visit to China, the first by a senior member of the Trump administration, passed off relatively smoothly although there were no tangible gains to show.

On the positive side, there was none of the awkwardness of the kind seen in Washington as President Donald Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel held the first summit meeting between two of the West's biggest allies.

Even a tweet from Trump criticizing China the night before Tillerson landed in Beijing did not, at least in public, create any discord.

As Tillerson wrapped up his visit on Sunday, Chinese President Xi Jinping praised his "active efforts" in making a smooth transition of the U.S.-China relationship to the Trump era.

more
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-tillerson-asia-diplomacy-idUSKBN16Q0CS

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Reply Tillerson ends China trip with warm words from President Xi (Original post)
DonViejo Mar 19 OP
karynnj Mar 19 #1
FailureToCommunicate Mar 19 #2
karynnj Mar 19 #3
FailureToCommunicate Mar 19 #4

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sun Mar 19, 2017, 11:23 AM

1. Amazing how low the bar is placed for Tillerson

Last edited Sun Mar 19, 2017, 04:56 PM - Edit history (3)

It seems the media is desperate to show him as doing well -- even as he includes only a reporter from a newssource so right wing that I had never heard of it.

The comments - headlined as warm - are not particularly so and the policy going forward is essentially what Kerry often worked with China for - as did a long line of predecessors. Here is a January 2016 news report of Kerry visiting under somewhat similar circumstances. http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/26/politics/john-kerry-north-korea-china-visit/ Here is the current NYT link for Tillerson - https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/19/world/asia/rex-tillerson-xi-jinping-north-korea.html (For a NYT comparison - here was their coverage of his 2016 visit - https://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/28/world/asia/us-china-north-korea.html

Note the difference in expectations. In Kerry's case, at CNN he is called quixotic for trying -- Tillerson is credited with being warmly recieved. The NYT was fairer and what is interesting is the similarity as you hear Tillerson also refer to what worked with Iran - as Kerry argued publicly a year ago. Even here the articles read differently and there was less optimism in the 2016 article, though the situation is graver now. I suspect it might be that the FP world desperately wants to believe in Tillerson, because the alternatives are Trump, Bannon, Kushner etc. In 2016, Obama, Lew, etc were respected by almost everyone.

Going back to January 2016, we know what eventually happened. Here is the NYT from slightly over a month later. The US and China worked to toughen the sanctions on China. (Note that the NYT credits the State Department and the Tresury Secretary Lew -- rather than Kerry, who was very closely involved and had better than average relations with both Xi Jinping and Wang Yi( the FM) , having been the key person who negotiated the breakthrough US/China climate change pact. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/03/world/asia/north-korea-un-sanctions.html?_r=0 )

Let's hope that Tillerson has the success that Kerry/Lew/Obama et al had in early 2016. Clearly NK is testing the Trump administration - and it was not helpful that Trump opted to publicly call out China.https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/19/world/asia/rex-tillerson-xi-jinping-north-korea.html


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Response to karynnj (Reply #1)

Sun Mar 19, 2017, 04:20 PM

2. Thanks for the good analysis -with links.

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Response to FailureToCommunicate (Reply #2)

Sun Mar 19, 2017, 04:57 PM

3. Thank you

I messed up one edit - 2016 NYT coverage of Kerry - https://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/28/world/asia/us-china-north-korea.html It allows a clearer comparison of both what we and the Chinese were speaking of and how the media covered it.

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Response to karynnj (Reply #3)

Sun Mar 19, 2017, 09:42 PM

4. The Globe ran this three days ago about his lack of Press on his Asia trip...

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