China urges U.S. to honour commitment on not forcing countries to choose sides

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Wang Wenbin

9th June 2023 – (Beijing) The Chinese Foreign Ministry has called on the United States to honour its commitment to not force other countries to choose between Washington and Beijing. Speaking to reporters on Friday, spokesperson Wang Wenbin urged U.S. diplomatic missions around the world to act on Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s recent remarks that the U.S. is “not asking anyone to choose between the United States and China.”

Wang called on the U.S. to be “truly open-minded” about other countries’ growing ties with China and to stop taking actions that could be seen as attempts to coerce or influence other countries’ choices. Specifically, he called on the US to stop targeting Huawei and other Chinese firms, stop pressuring allies to restrict chip exports to China, and stop spreading disinformation about China, such as the “debt trap” narrative.

Quoting George Washington, Wang emphasized that “actions, not words, are the true criterion of the attachment of friends.” He added that China would be closely watching what the US does, not just what it says.

The statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry comes amid ongoing tensions between China and the U.S., as the two countries jostle for influence and power on the global stage. The US has taken a number of steps in recent years to counter what it sees as China’s growing assertiveness, including imposing tariffs on Chinese goods, blacklisting Chinese companies, and stepping up military activity in the region.

China, for its part, has accused the U.S. of trying to contain its rise and interfering in its internal affairs. Wang’s statement on Friday reflects China’s growing frustration with what it sees as U.S. attempts to limit its influence and undermine its global standing.