Thursday, 29 Jul 2021

China is ‘existential threat of 21st century’ as US-EU put on notice over Beijing threat

China 'wants to rule the world' warns Gordon Chang

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China has adopted an increasingly hostile stance towards the United States and its allies in the Asia-Pacific, threatening Taiwan with a takeover and asserting a controversial claim over the South China Sea. Former US National Security Advisor John Bolton warned Beijing has now become the “existential threat of the 21st century” to the US, Europe and their allies in Asia. Speaking to LBC, Mr Bolton said: “My view is that China is the existential threat of the 21st century to the United States and to the West as a whole.

“I don’t think Trump was pursuing a terribly consistent policy but I think attitude in America, in Europe, in Japan have changed dramatically since evidence has come out about how China concealed the origins of the coronavirus and impeded international physicians and investigators from trying to understand it better so we could deal with it more effectively in our respective countries.

“People understand the greater threat China poses, really, across the board. Politically, economically, militarily.

“I think the desire to stand up to their efforts will increase. Biden has surely used the rhetoric of this kind of approach.

“Biden has a background here and once we get past the rhetoric, whether his actions will meet a fairly tough standard remains to be seen.”

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Mr Bolton warned “inadequate” response to the coronavirus pandemic left the door open to potential biological terror attacks.

He added: “We need to get to the bottom of this, no question about it.

“If we’re not planning for it, we’re making a big mistake.”

The warning comes as the White House confirmed US President Joe Biden is considering setting up talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

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The President’s National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said that the two leaders are due to “take stock of where we are in the relationship.”

Beijing fumed over a communique issued at Biden’s urging by the Group of Seven leaders on Sunday.

The Summit scolded the country over human rights in its Xinjiang region and Hong Kong while also demanding a full and thorough investigation of the origins of the coronavirus in China.

“Soon enough we will sit down to work out the right modality for the two presidents to engage,” Sullivan told reporters on a conference call.

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“It could be a phone call, it could be a meeting on the margins of another international summit, it could be something else.”

Mr Biden and President Xi are both expected to attend the G20 meeting in October hosted by Italy, one possible venue for such talks.

Mr Sullivan said no final decisions have been made.

Asked if he would call on Xi to push for an investigation in COVID-19 origins, President Biden on Wednesday told reporters: “We know each other well; we’re not old friends. It’s just pure business.”

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