Beijing. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Sunday launched high-level diplomatic talks in Beijing aimed at trying to defuse heightened US-China tensions. Blinken met with Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Kang to mark the official start of his visit. The two are also likely to discuss over dinner.
In addition to holding talks with Kang again on Monday, he will also hold talks with China’s top diplomat Wang Yi and possibly President Xi Jinping. Despite Blinken’s presence in the Chinese capital, there is little hope for any significant breakthrough on the complex issues between the two largest economies, as US-China relations have grown increasingly strained in recent years. Hostilities and recriminations have escalated sharply between the two countries over disagreements on a number of issues that have implications for global security and stability.
Blinken is the first high-level US official to visit China since US President Joe Biden took office. He is the first US Secretary of State to visit Beijing in five years. Biden and Xi agreed to visit Blinken at a meeting in Bali last year.
However, in February, Blinken canceled his trip to China after an alleged Chinese spy balloon was spotted in US airspace. The list of points of disagreement and potential friction between the two countries is long, ranging from trade with Taiwan, the human rights situation in China and Hong Kong to China’s military presence in the South China Sea and the Ukraine-Russia war.
‘Yellow Alert’ issued again for high temperature in China
Beijing. China’s National Observatory issued a ‘yellow alert’ for high temperatures on Sunday. The National Meteorological Center said temperatures are expected to reach 35 to 36 degrees Celsius on Sunday in parts of Inner Mongolia, Liaoning, Xinjiang, Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Yunnan, Guangxi and Hainan. As per the forecast, the temperature in some of these regions will reach 37 to 39 degree Celsius and at some places may even exceed 40 degree Celsius.
The Meteorological Center advised avoiding outdoor activities during the period of high temperature in the afternoon and suggested that workers exposed to high temperature should adopt necessary protective measures. China has a three-tier, colour-coded warning system for high temperatures, with ‘red’ representing the most severe warning, followed by ‘orange’ and ‘yellow’.
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