Donald Trump in China for talks on North Korea and trade
09 November, 2017, 01:56 | Author: Darren Santiago
The Trump administration has responded by framing his 11-day, five-nation Asia trip as a broadening of United States policy in the "Indo-Pacific" region.
Despite disagreements over trade and North Korea, the two leaders and their wives were all smiles as they ambled through the former imperial palace, first built in the 15th century.
At a news conference in Tokyo this week, Trump said he likes Xi "a lot" and considers him a friend.
Lavishing the "imperial treatment" on Trump and giving him the chance to bond with a fellow self-styled political strongman is just one way in which China is dealing with the US president's potential disruptions to one of the world's most consequential bilateral relationships.
But Trump was expected to use sophisticated technology available to the USA president to circumvent the so-called Great Firewall, with USA officials saying they had brought "gear" to "make it happen".
Trump could also use an alternative temporary phone as another way to avoid the risk of compromising his smartphone in a country which is often accused of hacking.
When Trump and his wife Melania land in the Chinese capital Wednesday, they will join President Xi Jinping and his wife, Peng Liyuan, for a tour of the Forbidden City, the historic palace that housed Chinese emperors and their families for nearly 500 years.
"I'm sure we've got the gear aboard this airplane to allow that to happen", the official continued. He also threatened to punish China for manipulating the value of its currency.
That relationship pressed forward as Trump arrived Wednesday for a reception Chinese officials are calling the beginning of a "state visit, plus" that included an elaborate series of theatrical performances - timed to coincide with the sunset - in the heart of Beijing's historic Forbidden City.
Great Fire co-founder Charlie Smith told the Press Association he hopes Trump will continue to tweet while in China.
Russia, along with China and the European powers, has rejected Trump's demand to renegotiate the pact to curb Iran's ballistic missile program.
Analysts say there is a perception in China that ensuring a good personal rapport between the two leaders would be key to resolving structural impediments.
But the presidency has a way of bringing uncomfortable realities crashing down on the most powerful person in the world, like the undeniably intertwined fates of the U.S. and Chinese economies.
"All responsible nations must join forces to isolate the brutal regime of North Korea", Trump said. In fact, he's continued to rail against the U.S. trade deficit with China and suggested more decisive action could come soon.
"The Chinese government know who they're dealing with", said Beijing-based historian Jeremiah Jenne.
His criticism of the country's major trade partners in Asia may win him support back home from those who believe his claim that unfair trade practices have stripped jobs and wealth from the United States "decade after decade, trade deficit upon trade deficit", as he said in March.
"China does not deliberately seek a trade surplus".
But so far Chinese officials have been wary at the prospect of taking more punitive measures against North Korea. The US president's visit comes amid the increasing threats from North Korea, a troubled geopolitical ally of China. The US says the area should belong to no one, remaining legally open for America's own military patrols.
But, he stressed, "this issue can not be solved all by China's self".
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