Secretary of State Antony Blinken is scheduled to meet with China’s foreign minister on Friday during the 77th U.N. General Assembly, the State Department confirmed.

”As part of our ongoing efforts to maintain open lines of communication and manage competition responsibly, the Secretary will discuss a range of bilateral and global issues with” Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

The talks will occur in the backdrop of comments made by President Joe Biden this past weekend on CBS’ ”60 Minutes,” in which he pledged U.S. support of the defense of Taiwan in the event of a potential invasion.

”We agree with what we signed on to, a long time ago. And there’s a one-China policy. Taiwan makes their own judgments about their independence. We are not moving — we are not encouraging them being independent. That’s their decision,” the president said.

When asked if U.S. forces would defend the island if China attacked, Biden replied, ”Yes. If, in fact, there was an unprecedented attack.” He later affirmed that U.S. men and women would defend Taiwan in such an event, unlike in Ukraine.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning condemned the statement by Biden in a press conference on Monday, assuring that China would strive for peaceful reunification but ”not tolerate any activities aimed at secession.”

“There is only one China in the world, Taiwan is part of China, and the government of the People’s Republic of China is the only legitimate government of China,” Mao declared, adding that China has lodged “stern representations” with the U.S.

According to The Hill, Blinken last spoke with Wang two months ago in Bali, Indonesia, after meeting with several other foreign ministers in the Group of Twenty, or G-20.


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