The United States and the People’s Republic of China are preparing to announce the resumption of military-to-military communications, Axios reported.
Anonymous sources told Axios that President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping will reveal the move after meeting on the sidelines of this year’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.
China suspended the communications in 2022 after then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat congresswoman from California, visited Taiwan, China’s chief rival, in an unprecedented move.
Among the channels canceled were the annual Defense Policy Coordination Talks and the Maritime Military Communications Agreement signed in 1998.
However, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi gave the first indication last week while visiting Washington, D.C., that Beijing was open to restoring the channels, multiple sources said.
“The Chinese are signaling that they will resume military-to-military communications, which is significant. It’s a key priority for the Pentagon,” said Bonnie Glaser of the German Marshall Fund, a foreign policy think tank. “But it remains to be seen whether they are willing to take meaningful steps to reduce the risk of accidents or discuss ways to preserve strategic stability.”
Chinese Vice Premier He Lifeng also is scheduled to meet with Treasury Secretary Yellen this week and participate in APEC.
The summit, which will be held in San Francisco from Nov. 15-17, serves as a means for 21 countries in the Pacific Rim to promote free trade throughout the region.
The reported announcement comes after Chinese and U.S. officials met on Nov. 3 in Beijing to discuss maritime security, incidents in the South China Sea, the economy, and environmental concerns.