Kissinger Makes Surprise Visit to China, Meets Minister of Defence

It is not yet clear how long Kissinger will be in Beijing or whether he will meet other officials, including Chinese leader Xi Jinping. Mr Xi and Mr Kissinger met in Beijing in 2019, when Mr Xi told Mr Kissinger he hoped he would “enjoy healthier years in the future and continue to be a promoter and contributor to China-US relations,” according to XinhuaChina's state news agency.

Wu Xinbo, dean of international studies at Fudan University in Shanghai, said China's warmth towards Mr. Kissinger sent a message about how much importance China places on “old friends”. That friendship contrasts with the more belligerent stance toward Beijing taken by the American presidential administration recently.

“This symbolism is very important,” he said. “I think Kissinger's visit to China was meant to send a signal, that the Sino-US relationship should be seen from a historical perspective.” He added, “You can't just look at short-term political needs.”

In the same way, said Professor Wu, Mr. Kissinger's meeting with Mr. Li, the defense minister, was another reminder to the United States that China will not resume direct military-to-military communication until the United States lifts its sanctions. Chinese officials had rejected Blinken's request to reopen the channel during his visit.

A Chinese defense ministry statement about the meeting with Mr Kissinger said Mr Li had criticized “some people in the United States” for “not meeting China halfway”, noting that the atmosphere of friendly communication had been “destroyed”.

Chinese state media showered Mr Kissinger with compliments.

in a May articlefor Mr. Kissinger's Global Times, a tabloid run by the nationalist party, said that Mr. hostile relationship.

Joy Dong And Amy Chang Chien research contributions.