The US is currently not planning any diplomatic contacts with China. About this on Thursday, February 16, declared U.S. State Department Deputy Press Officer Vedant Patel during a briefing with reporters.
Patel was asked about the likelihood of renewed interaction between Washington and Beijing at the level of foreign ministers.
“I don’t have any specific pre-announcement calls or any schedule additions that I could present,” a State Department spokesman replied.
At the same time, Patel recalled that the United States initially advocated maintaining channels of communication with China.
“It’s been that way for… quite a while now and we’re looking forward to continuing to work on it, but I don’t have any specific calls to announce,” he added.
Earlier, on February 16, US President Joe Biden, during an address to the nation, commented on the incident with a Chinese balloon in the sky over the United States. The American leader stressed that the apparatus had nothing to do with Chinese intelligence. Biden added that he plans to have a talk with Chinese leader Xi Jinping in the near future.
On February 15, First Deputy US Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said that dialogue with Beijing is very important for Washington. She stressed that the US should tell China when its actions are contrary to the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The day before, John Kirby, strategic communications coordinator at the White House National Security Council, stressed that Washington does not seek conflict with Beijing amid the downed balloon incident. He noted that the United States intends to keep channels of communication with China open.
On the night of February 3, a huge balloon was seen in the sky over the States. The Pentagon then stated that it was a Chinese, presumably intelligence apparatus, but it did not pose a danger to the population, and all necessary measures to prevent the leakage of valuable information were promptly taken.
Later, the head of the Pentagon, Lloyd Austin, said that the US military, on behalf of Joe Biden, shot down a Chinese-owned balloon that fell into American airspace. According to him, the apparatus was used to monitor strategic facilities located on the continental part of the country.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry said that Beijing opposes the attacks and slander of Washington after the “accidental” hit of a Chinese balloon in the United States. According to the representative of the department, the balloon was indeed brought by the wind from the territory of China, but we are talking about a civilian airship, which was used for scientific research and was not supposed to be over the States.
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