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

Video On The Scene: In Ethiopia, 'Are You a Journalist?' Is a Loaded Question

VOA's Anita Powell describes the difficulties faced by reporters in fully conveying the story in a country where people are reticent to share their true opinions More

Nigerians Await New President With High Hopes

When pomp and circumstance of inauguration end in Abuja, Buhari will sit down to the hard task of governing Nigeria More

India's Restrictions on Several NGOs Raise Concerns

Political analysts link recent clampdown on advocacy groups to report last year that said foreign-funded NGO’s negatively impact economic development More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardshipi
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
May 28, 2015 6:48 PM
Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Floodwaters Recede in Houston, but Rain Continues

Many parts of Texas are recovering from one of the worst natural disasters to hit the southwestern state. Heavy rains on Monday and early Tuesday caused rivers to swell in eastern and central Texas, washing away homes and killing at least 13 people. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, floodwaters are receding slowly in the country's fourth-largest city, and there likely is to be more rain in the coming days.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video US Voters Seek Answers From Presidential Candidates on IS Gains

The growth of the Islamic State militant group in Iraq and Syria comes as the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign kicks off in the Midwest state of Iowa.   As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, voters want to know how the candidates would handle recent militant gains in the Middle East.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Film Festival Looks at Indigenous Peoples, Culture Conflict

A recent Los Angeles film festival highlighted the plight of people caught between two cultures. Mike O'Sullivan has more on the the Garifuna International Film Festival, a Los Angeles forum created by a woman from Central America who wants the world to know more about her culture.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.

VOA Blogs