Blinken, Wang discuss Korean Peninsula, Taiwan, Russia’s war in Ukraine: State Dept.

WASHINGTON, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi discussed a range of regional and global issues, including on the Korean Peninsula, Taiwan and Russia's war in Ukraine during their talks in Germany on Friday, a State Department spokesperson said. They met on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference as Washington has been doubling down on its drive to "responsibly" manage strategic competition with China through improved bilateral communication and other measures. "The two sides also exchanged views on the situation in the Middle East and on the Korean Peninsula and affirmed that their respective senior officials should meet to follow up on these discussions," State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said in a readout. Miller did not elaborate on the Korea-related topic, but the two sides were expected to touch on North Korea's evolving military threats. Blinken emphasized the importance of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and in th e South China Sea, while raising concerns over China's support for Russia's war against Ukraine, including support for Russia's defense industrial base, according to Miller. The secretary also highlighted the importance of continuing to implement the progress made by President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping at their summit in November in California, including counternarcotics cooperation and military-to-military communications. "The secretary reiterated that the United States will stand up for our interests and values and those of our allies and partners," Miller said. Both sides recognized the importance of maintaining open lines of communication across a range of strategic issues, including consultations and high-level meetings in key areas in the coming months, according to the spokesperson. Source: Yonhap News Agency