News / USA

Observers: US Faces Choices at China Dialogue

FILE - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks at the State Department in Washington, June 16, 2014.
FILE - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks at the State Department in Washington, June 16, 2014.
Victoria Macchi

Top officials from the United States and China are likely to focus on areas in which the two countries cooperate at the sixth round of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue this week. But, there are few expectations the meeting will bring substantial change to the relationship between the two governments.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry leads a delegation of top U.S. economic and diplomatic officials to Beijing for the annual talks, which begin Wednesday.

Some experts who study the relationship between the two countries say the delegation is likely to avoid public confrontation over bilateral economic and security problems.  

Cheng Li, director of the China Center at the Brookings Institute, says both countries could play it safe this week to create a better atmosphere for President Barack Obama’s potential visit to Beijing later this year for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting.

“There’s another important meeting will be in November, the APEC meeting, and President Obama will visit China, will probably have a state visit during that period," he said. "So I think it is important for both countries to emphasize their strong ties, their common interests, rather than going to the other direction, which is very, very disturbing.”

That disturbing direction would be off China’s shores, where the economic giant is accused of aggressively trying to expand its maritime control. It's a dangerous situation, says Li, and one that leaders in both countries need to address.

A State Department official has said the U.S. plans to raise the issue of China's claims to most of the South China Sea and a large part of the East China Sea. Vietnam, the Philippines and Japan dispute those claims, saying they extend into their maritime regions.

The U.S. also is expected to raise a variety of economic and security issues, including China's cyber spying.

Bonnie Glaser with the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, says major breakthroughs are unlikely this week.

She says the focus instead may be on cooperation.

"On the strategic side, there are issues that I think are positive that the U.S. and China will talk about," she said. "Continued cooperation on Iran. Some nascent cooperation in Afghanistan. And of course, their shared desire to denuclearize North Korea. Although I think there probably won't be any major achievements there."

On Monday, the State Department avoided specifics about its agenda for the talks, with a spokeswoman telling reporters to "stay tuned" for the meetings on Wednesday and Thursday. 

You May Like

Sydney Hostage-taker Failed to Manipulate Social Media

Gunman forced captives to use personal Facebook, YouTube accounts to issue his demands; online community helped flag messages, urged others not to share them More

UN Seeks $8.4 Billion to Help War-Hit Syrians

Effort aimed at helping Syrians displaced within their own country and those who've fled to neighboring ones More

Who Are the Pakistani Taliban?

It's an umbrella group of militant organizations whose objective is enforcement of Sharia in Pakistan 'whether through peace or war' More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?i
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
December 17, 2014 11:54 AM
The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.

All About America

AppleAndroid