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Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) shake hands with then-Vice President Biden (L) inside the Great Hall of the People on Dec. 4, 2013 in Beijing, China. Photo: Lintao Zhang via Getty Images

The White House will consider talks with China's President Xi, U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Thursday.

Why it matters: Sullivan's remarks come one day after President Biden met with Russian President Vladimir Putin. They also come as the U.S. increases pressure on the Chinese government to address its human rights issues, including the Uyghur genocide and Hong Kong, and the origins of the coronavirus.

What they're saying: "What the President said about there being no substitute for leader-level dialogue as a central part of why he held the summit with Putin yesterday also applies to China and to President Xi Jinping," Sullivan told reporters in a press briefing. "He will look for opportunities to engage with President Xi going forward." 

  • Though he said there are no particular plans at the moment, both leaders are likely to attend the G20 in October.
  • "Soon enough, we will sit down to work out the right modality for the two presidents to engage," Sullivan said. "Now, it could be a phone call; it could be a meeting on the margins of an international — another international summit; it could be something else."

The big picture: At Biden's urging, G7 leaders issued a communique on Sunday that criticized the Chinese government's human rights abuses and demanded a full and thorough investigation of the coronavirus' origins, Reuters notes.

Go deeper

Sep 22, 2021 - World

Scoop: Jake Sullivan plans to visit Saudi Arabia, Egypt and UAE next week

Sullivan. Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

White House National Security adviser Jake Sullivan is planning to travel to the Middle East next week, including a stop in Saudi Arabia. He would be the most senior Biden administration official to visit the kingdom.

Why it matters: Sullivan's first trip to the region since taking office is expected to include stops in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, sources briefed on the plans tell Axios. All three countries are longtime U.S. partners who have faced some early tensions with Biden.

U.S. friends in Latin America are turning to China

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The U.S. is losing Latin America to China without putting up a fight, Ecuador’s ambassador to Washington told Axios, laying bare her frustrations with early inattention from the Biden administration.

Why it matters: Ecuador isn't alone. China has deepened its engagement in the region, and it's now the top trading partner for many of the region's largest economies. That gives Beijing considerable leverage in a region historically dominated by the U.S., and makes Latin America a major frontier in the global competition for influence.

Biden steps into the breach

Sen. Joe Manchin heads to a meeting with President Biden today. Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

President Biden ramped up the pressure on his fellow Democrats Wednesday, calling a series of lawmakers to the White House in the hope of ending infighting and getting them in line.

Why it matters: Divisions within the party are threatening to derail Biden's top priorities. After several weeks of letting negotiations play out, the president is finally asserting his power to ensure his own party doesn't block his agenda.

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