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Facing the Challenge of China


Mike Pompeo shakes hands with Yang Jiechi,

Speaking about the threat posed by the Communist Party of China, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told a forum on transatlantic relations, “We should address that challenge together.”

Facing the Challenge of China
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Speaking about the threat posed by the Communist Party of China, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told a forum on transatlantic relations, “We should address that challenge together.”

In his remarks at a virtual session of the Brussels Forum, Secretary Pompeo declared that “The United States is not forcing Europe to choose between the free world or China’s authoritarian vision. China is making that choice between freedom and democracy.”

The problem that leaders on both sides of the Atlantic must solve, he said, “is how do we preserve freedom and democracy on both sides of the Atlantic and protect our citizens -- EU citizens and American citizens alike” from China’s malign activities.

These include China’s “provocative military actions” in the South China Sea and border with India; its “opaque nuclear program, and threats against peaceful neighbors.” He cited Beijing’s violations of its international commitments, including to the World Health Organization and the people of Hong Kong. He also pointed to the Chinese Communist Party’s cover-up of the novel coronavirus, its predatory economic practices, theft of intellectual property, and “legion of human rights abuses.”

“My message today is this: We have to work together to continue the transatlantic awakening to the China challenge in the interest of preserving our free societies, our prosperity, and our future.”

To further that goal, Secretary Pompeo announced that the United States has accepted a proposal put forth by the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell to create a new U.S.-EU dialogue on China, which Mr. Pompeo described as “a mechanism for discussing the concerns we have about the threat China poses to the West and our shared democratic ideals.”

He emphasized that recognizing the threat posed by China does not mean that Europe and the United States must choose between “business” and “confronting the Chinese Communist Party:”

“Recall that China needs markets too…China needs access to Western knowledge, Western knowhow. We need to make sure that they do that through the system of the rules-based order that has served the transatlantic [region/partnership] so well for all of these years.”

“My invitation to America’s friends in Europe,” said Secretary Pompeo, “is to defend these values in our time, that they may shape the world for the good in the future just as they have done in the past. We’ll defend these values together.”

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