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Photo: Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Getty Images

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan will meet with two top China officials next week in Anchorage, Alaska, the State Department announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: This will be the first in-person meeting between senior U.S. and China representatives since President Biden took office, at a time when tensions between the world's two largest economies have escalated to new heights.

Details: Blinken and Sullivan will meet on March 18 in Anchorage with their two Chinese counterparts — director of the Office of the Central Commission for Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi and state councilor Wang Yi. The officials will engage on a "range of issues," including ones in which they have "deep disagreements," Blinken tweeted on Wednesday.

  • Biden will also be meeting virtually on Friday with leaders of Australia, Japan and India — an alliance known as the Quad that seeks to curb China's growing influence in the Indo-Pacific.
  • Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin are also planning to visit Japan and South Korea next week.

Our thought bubble, via Axios China expert Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian: Yang Jiechi and Wang Yi undoubtedly hope to win a detente, after four years of growing confrontation under former President Trump.

  • Biden has so far upheld most of the Trump era's tough China measures in a sort of holding pattern, as the administration conducts a comprehensive review of America's China policy.
  • China's leaders see the current moment as a window of opportunity to persuade a new administration that the U.S. has much to gain from supporting Beijing's global goals — and much to lose if the U.S. tries to thwart them.

Go deeper

Brazil's health minister tests positive for COVID during UN summit in N.Y.

President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro (L) and Health Minister Marcelo Queiroga in Brasilia, Brazil, in May. Photo: Andressa Anholete/Getty Images

Brazil's Health Minister Marcelo Queirog has tested positive for COVID-19 while in New York City for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), he confirmed Tuesday night.

Why it matters: Hours earlier, Queirog had accompanied Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to the UNGA. The Biden administration expressed concern last week that the gathering of world leaders could become a coronavirus "superspreader event."

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump sues New York Times and his niece over tax report

Former President Trump hosting a boxing match in Hollywood, Florida on Sept. 11. Photo: Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Trump filed a $100 million lawsuit against the New York Times and his niece Mary Trump on Tuesday over the news outlet's 2018 reporting on his tax records, the Daily Beast first reported.

Details: The suit, filed in New York's Dutchess County, alleges NYT journalists "engaged in an insidious plot to obtain confidential and highly-sensitive records" and that they "convinced" Mary Trump to "smuggle records out of her attorney's office and turn them over to The Times."

House passes government funding, debt ceiling bill

Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

The House passed a bill on Tuesday to fund the government through early December, along with a measure to raise the debt ceiling through December 2022.

Why it matters: The stopgap measure, which needs to be passed to avoid a government shutdown when funding expires on Sept. 30, faces a difficult journey in the Senate where at least ten Republicans would need to vote in favor.

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