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US warns China over pressure on Taiwan ahead of Biden-Xi summit

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The US has warned China over its pressure on Taiwan, the State Department said Saturday as the two powers gird for a hotly awaited summit.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke with Foreign Minister Wang Yi and “expressed concern regarding the PRC's continued military, diplomatic, and economic pressure against Taiwan,” the department said in a statement.

President Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping are set to hold a virtual summit Monday evening Washington time.

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Blinken and Wang spoke Friday to discuss preparations for the summit, with the secretary reported to have “urged Beijing to engage in meaningful dialogue to resolve cross-Strait issues peacefully and in a manner consistent with the wishes and best interests of the people on Taiwan.”

Relations between the world's two largest economies have deteriorated, in part over Taiwan, a self-ruling democracy claimed by Beijing.

China's military last month made a record number of incursions into the island's air defense zone.

Washington has repeatedly signaled its support for Taiwan in the face of what it has described as Chinese aggression.

The State Department said Monday's summit “presents an opportunity for the two leaders to discuss how to responsibly manage competition between the US and the PRC while working together in areas where interests align.”

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