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NEW YORK: American diplomacy chief Antony Blinken met Chinese Vice President Han Zheng in New York on Monday and argued for the need for a “responsible” approach to strained relations with Beijing.

“I think it’s a good thing to increase the number of high-level meetings between the United States and China,” he said at the start of his meeting with the Chinese official, which took place at the Chinese mission to the United Nations in New York.

The aim of the talks is to “ensure that we keep the lines of communication open and show that we are managing the relationship between our two countries responsibly,” he said.

For his part, the Chinese Vice President noted that the world’s two leading economic powers are facing “many difficulties and challenges.”

“The world needs a healthy and stable relationship between the United States and China,” he argued, for the benefit of both countries and “the entire world.”

Washington and Beijing are stepping up efforts to calm the turbulent relationship.

Monday’s meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations’ annual general assembly will take place this weekend in Malta between Joe Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan and Chinese diplomatic chief Wang Yi.

The White House spoke of “open, substantive and constructive discussions” that lasted a total of twelve hours over two days. The last meeting of this kind and at this level took place last May.

Around the same time, in the spring, the American president predicted a “thaw” in Sino-American relations, which had deteriorated in February after a balloon flight over the United States. Chinese.

According to the White House, China and the United States are “committed to consultations in certain areas,” particularly on “political and security developments in the Asia-Pacific region.”

The United States and China have renewed dialogue in recent months with a series of visits to Beijing by senior American officials, including Antony Blinken last June.

This resumption of talks could foreshadow a possible tête-à-tête between Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the next APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) summit in mid-November in San Francisco, California, but this did not happen in Washington or in Beijing confirmed this at the time.

Bilateral relations remain strained, with trade disputes, Chinese expansion in the South China Sea and the issue of the self-governing democratic island of Taiwan remaining stumbling blocks.