News / Asia

US, Chinese Leaders to Discuss Syria at G20

U.S. President Barack Obama meets Chinese President Xi Jinping at The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage, California, June 7, 2013.
U.S. President Barack Obama meets Chinese President Xi Jinping at The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage, California, June 7, 2013.
William Ide
Chinese President Xi Jinping is scheduled to meet with U.S. President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg. Syria is expected to be a key topic during the meeting, but political analysts in Beijing say it is unlikely China will waver in its opposition to U.S.-led military action in the war torn country.
 
The meeting between Obama and Xi will be their first since the two met earlier this year at a resort in California. At that casual, no necktie summit, the two focused more on a host of thorny issues that confront U.S.-China relations.
 
This meeting will be much different. This time, the two will be sitting down on the sidelines of a summit for the Group of 20 leading world economies, a largely economic gathering that is being overshadowed by the conflict in Syria.
 
China has repeatedly voiced its opposition to military action in Syria and has long opposed any form of intervention in the civil war. Along with Russia, it has already vetoed two United Nations resolutions aimed at pressuring Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
 
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei issued a stern warning against military action once again on Thursday. "Unilateral military actions go against international law and the norms of international relations and will further complicate the Syrian issue and cause the Middle East more turbulence,” he said.

Speaking with reporters in Russia Thursday, China’s Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao echoed that position and went even further. Zhu warned that military action would have a negative impact on the global economy as well as the price of oil.

Political analysts in Beijing said the meeting between Obama and Xi is not likely to be confrontational, but add there is very little room for negotiation.

“China's position is close to Russia, and if Russia shifts its stance, China might also not maintain a confrontational attitude towards the United States.  At present, though, there is very little room for agreement between China and the U.S. on Syria,” stated Chen Qi, a political scientist at Beijing’s Tsinghua University.

Shi Yinhong, a political scientist at Beijing’s Renmin University, said he doubts either side has high expectations going into the meeting given their respective stances. He said that if the U.S. wants China’s support, it should go to the U.N. Security Council first. “America’s position is fixed and President Xi Jinping can’t say to Mr. Obama 'abandon your plans for a military strike,'” he explained.

Even so, Shi said Xi is likely to still make his opposition to unilateral action clear.

Chen Qi said that given that Xi will meet with both Russia’s president and Obama while in St. Petersburg, it is even more unlikely that China’s stance could change. But he said that personally, he believes Beijing should do just that.

“I think China should support U.S. military intervention in Syria because it would be an opportunity to shape a strategic cooperation between the two countries," Chen Qi said. "And also China would benefit rather than be harmed by a military operation.”

Chen added that more U.S. focus on the Middle East means less pressure on China in the Pacific region.

You May Like

Hezbollah Chief Says Does Not Want War But Ready for One

VOA's Jerusalem correspondent reports that with an Israeli election looming and Hezbollah's involvement in Syria, neither side appears interested in a wider conflict More

Multimedia VOA SPECIAL REPORT: Despite Danger, Best US Minds Battle Deadly Virus

Scientists at America's premier biological research center race in military confinement to find effective drugs, speedier tests and a safe vaccine amid the deadliest outbreak of Ebola in history More

Kurdish Poet Battles to Defend Language, Culture

Kawa Nemir's work is an example of what he sees as an irreversible cultural and political assertiveness among Kurds in Turkey More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Judith Kay from: USA
September 05, 2013 8:57 AM
Give the rebels Way bigger weapons to use...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Egypt's Suez Canal Dreams Tempered by Continued Unresti
X
Heather Murdock
January 30, 2015 8:00 PM
Egypt plans to expand the Suez Canal, raising hopes that the end of its economic crisis may be in sight. But some analysts say they expect the project may cost too much and take too long to make life better for everyday Egyptians. VOA's Heather Murdock reports.
Video

Video Egypt's Suez Canal Dreams Tempered by Continued Unrest

Egypt plans to expand the Suez Canal, raising hopes that the end of its economic crisis may be in sight. But some analysts say they expect the project may cost too much and take too long to make life better for everyday Egyptians. VOA's Heather Murdock reports.
Video

Video Threat of Creeping Lava Has Hawaiians on Edge

Residents of the small town of Pahoa on the Big Island of Hawaii face an advancing threat from the Kilauea volcano. Local residents are keeping a watchful eye on creeping lava. Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Pro-Kremlin Youth Group Creatively Promotes 'Patriotic' Propaganda

As Russia's President Vladimir Putin faces international pressure over Ukraine and a failing economy, unofficial domestic groups are rallying to his support. One such youth organization, CET, or Network, uses creative multimedia to appeal to Russia's urban youth with patriotic propaganda. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Mobile Infrared Scanners May Help Homeowners Save Energy

Mobile photo scanners have been successfully employed for navigational purposes, such as Google Maps. Now, a group of scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology says the same technology could help homeowners better insulate their houses and save some money. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Filmmakers Produce Hand-Painted Documentary on Van Gogh

The troubled life of the famous 19th century Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh has been told through many books and films, but never in the way a group of filmmakers now intends to do. "Loving Vincent " will be the first ever feature-length film made of animated hand-painted images, done in the style of the late artist. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Issues or Ethnicity? Question Divides Nigeria

As Nigeria goes to the polls next month, many expect the two top presidential contenders to gain much of their support from constituencies organized along ethnic or religious lines. But are faith and regional blocs really what political power in Nigeria is about? Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Rock-Consuming Organisms Alter Views of Life Processes

Scientists thought they knew much about how life works, until a discovery more than two decades ago challenged conventional beliefs. Scientists found that there are organisms that breathe rocks. And it is only recently that the scientific community is accepting that there are organisms that could get energy out of rocks. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports.
Video

Video Paris Attacks Highlight Global Weapons Black Market

As law enforcement officials piece together how the Paris and Belgian terror cells carried out their recent attacks, questions are being asked about how they obtained military grade assault weapons - which are illegal in the European Union. As VOA's Jeff Swicord reports, experts say there is a very active worldwide black market for these weapons, and criminals and terrorists are buying.
Video

Video Activists Accuse China of Targeting Religious Freedom

The U.S.-based Chinese religious rights group ChinaAid says 2014 was the worst year for religious freedom in China since the end of the Cultural Revolution. As Ye Fan reports, activists say Beijing has been tightening religious controls ever since Chinese leader Xi Jinping came to office. Hu Wei narrates.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Former Sudan 'Lost Boy' Becomes Chess Master in NYC

In the mid-1980’s, thousands of Sudanese boys escaped the country's civil war by walking for weeks, then months and finally for more than a year, up to 1,500 kilometers across three countries. The so-called Lost Boys of the Sudan had little time for games. But one of them later mastered the game of chess, and now teaches it to children in the New York area. VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York has his story.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid