TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — During his four-hour meeting with President Joe Biden on Wednesday (Nov. 15), Chinese leader Xi Jinping (習近平) told the U.S. to stop supporting Taiwan independence and halt arms sales to the country.
Biden and Xi held the first face-to-face summit meeting in a year at the Filoli Estate, 40 km south of San Francisco amid the APEC Leader's Meeting. Xi was cited by China's state-run mouthpiece Xinhua as saying that "the Taiwan issue has always been the most important and sensitive issue in Sino-U.S. relations."
Xi said China places much importance on the "relevant positive statements" made by the U.S. in Bali, an apparent reference to the U.S. policy that it does not support Taiwan independence. He said that the U.S. should "honor its commitment of not supporting 'Taiwan independence,' stop arming Taiwan, and support China's peaceful reunification."
Xi reportedly added that China will "realize reunification, and this is unstoppable."
At a news conference after the meeting, Biden told reporters that he reiterated what he has said since taking office and what his predecessors have said: "We maintain an agreement that there is a 'one China' policy," reported The Independent. He then emphasized "I'm not going to change that. That's not going to change."
Although Beijing's "one China" principle claims that Taiwan is a part of China, the U.S. "one China" policy differs in that Washington acknowledges China's claim to Taiwan, but does not take an official stance on Taiwan's status.
However, when asked by CNN correspondent MJ Lee whether he still considered Xi to be a dictator, Biden responded, "He is a dictator in the sense that he is a guy who runs a country that is communist." He added that the government in Beijing is "totally different than ours."