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Monday February 06, 2023

Biden, Xi 'agreed' nuclear weapons should never be used

President Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi held their first face-to-face talks since the former took office on the sidelines of a G20 meeting

By AFP
November 14, 2022
US President Joe Biden (R) and Chinas President Xi Jinping (L) meet on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Nusa Dua on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on November 14, 2022. — AFP/File
US President Joe Biden (R) and China's President Xi Jinping (L) meet on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Nusa Dua on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on November 14, 2022. — AFP/File

NUSA DUA, INDONESIA: US President Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping agreed in talks Monday that nuclear weapons should never be used, including in Ukraine, the White House said.

"President Biden and President Xi reiterated their agreement that a nuclear war should never be fought and can never be won and underscored their opposition to the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine," it said in a statement.

The pair held their first face-to-face talks since Biden took office on the sidelines of a G20 meeting expected to be dominated by the war in Ukraine.

The pair shook hands at the start of the meeting, with Biden saying the superpowers shared the responsibility to show the world that they can "manage our differences, prevent competition from becoming conflict".

The White House said he had told Xi that Washington would "continue to compete vigorously" with China, but "this competition should not veer into conflict".

Biden raised objections to China's "coercive and increasingly aggressive actions toward Taiwan," the White House said after three hours of talks aimed at avoiding conflict between the rival superpowers.

And he told Xi the world should encourage North Korea to act "responsibly", after a record-breaking series of missile launches by Pyongyang and growing fears of a new nuclear test.