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US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will meet his Chinese counterpart in Singapore for the first time.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin (left), Chinese Defense Minister General Wei Fenghe (right)

According to a pentagon readout, the meeting between secretary Austin and Chinese Defense Minister General Wei Fenghe will occur later this week. In the readout, the pentagon says that China requested the meeting. A pentagon spokesman said “I don’t have any more details at this time except to say we expect, from our perspective, the substance of that meeting to be focused on managing competition and regional and global issues.”

General Mark Milley

The meeting comes as tensions between the United States and China continue to ratchet up over a myriad of issues including Taiwan, North Korea, Russia, global leadership, and trade. In recent months, China has increased its strong rhetoric toward the United States and has issued warnings that certain actions threaten “global peace and security” and could result in a “conflict.” The United States has also stepped up its rhetoric with China. Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley has called China “the biggest pacing threat to the United States.”


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