Above photo: US President Joe Biden (left) and Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) before their meeting on the sidelines of the APEC Summit, San Francisco, USA, November 15, 2023. Reuters.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning called US President Joe Biden “irresponsible” after he referred to his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping as a “dictator.”
During a press briefing, Mao specified that Biden’s statement is “absolutely wrong” and an “irresponsible political manipulation.”
“This statement is absolutely wrong and constitutes an irresponsible political manipulation. China firmly opposes it,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman emphasized.
The official’s statement came after Biden reiterated that he has not changed his opinion that Xi Jinping is a dictator. Biden made this statement to the press after the two leaders had held direct talks within the framework of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum Leaders Summit, held in San Francisco.
“Look, he is. He’s a dictator in the sense that he’s a guy who runs a country that is a communist country that’s based on a form of government totally different than ours,” Biden said in response to a question by a journalist.
In this regard, Mao pointed out that there are always people with ulterior motives who try to instigate and undermine China-US relations.
However, she added that “they will not succeed.”
This is not the first time that Joe Biden has called Xi a “dictator.” The US president made a similar remark in June, which also drew a response from China.
The two presidents met on Wednesday, November 15, in Silicon Valley, just outside San Francisco, USA, making it the first face-to-face meeting between the two this year.
The last time Biden and Xi spoke face to face was exactly one year and two days ago, at the G-20 summit in Bali, Indonesia.
Biden said that the meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping was constructive and productive.
“We have not always agreed… but the conversations with Xi are always direct,” he added.