Dec 3, 2018

Trump claims a "strong and personal relationship" with China's Xi Jinping

In a series of Monday morning tweets, President Trump said his "strong and personal relationship" with Chinese President Xi Jinping will help bring about "massive and very positive change" on issues like trade, North Korea and — together with Vladimir Putin — the global arms race.

"President Xi and I have a very strong and personal relationship. He and I are the only two people that can bring about massive and very positive change, on trade and far beyond, between our two great Nations. A solution for North Korea is a great thing for China and ALL! I am certain that, at some time in the future, President Xi and I, together with President Putin of Russia, will start talking about a meaningful halt to what has become a major and uncontrollable Arms Race. The U.S. spent 716 Billion Dollars this year. Crazy!"

The big picture: Trump's tweets come on the heels of a G20 dinner with Xi that yielded a 90-day ceasefire in the U.S.-China trade war. While the temporary truce has major implications for the world economy, Trump is also betting that a warmer personal relationship with Xi will be useful for confronting diplomatic issues — an opinion he has often voiced with respect to Putin and Russia as well.

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