China’s foreign ministry reportedly warned on Tuesday of conflict and confrontation with the US if Washington does not slow down its present hostile approach to Beijing.
Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang’s heated remarks highlighted the world’s two largest economies’ increasing tensions in the aftermath of the surveillance balloon controversy and Russia’s conflict in Ukraine.
These echoed equally harsh words made a day earlier by China’s leader, Xi Jinping, who blamed deteriorating relations on US efforts to control China and said Beijing would increasingly seek to push back.
Qin, who was the Chinese ambassador to the United States until recently, questioned President Joe Biden’s declaration that the United States desires an honest competition with China but not confrontation.
“The U.S. side supposedly wants to put ‘guardrails’ on Sino-U.S. relations and not to clash,” Qin continued. “In fact it wants China not to respond in words or action when slandered or attacked. That is just impossible.”
“If the U.S. side does not put on the brakes and continues down the wrong path, no amount of guardrails can stop the derailment and rollover into confrontation and conflict,” The Chinese official said.
Qin’s remarks come at a time when US-China ties are strained due to a number of scandals, including the alleged Chinese surveillance balloon that hovered in US airspace last month before being shot down.