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Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Maxim Shipenkov/Pool via Reuters/File Photo

Putin-Xi “friendship” threatens Arctic

A new report quoted in the Globe and Mail suggests how Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping’s “friendship without limits” is progressing: Russia is giving very generously in exchange for China buying its oil.

The report by Strider Technologies says China is gaining a major foothold in the Arctic as Russia shifts its defense priorities to the war in Ukraine. Since Putin’s invasion, 234 Chinese-owned companies have registered to operate in the Russian-controlled Arctic, Strider said, an 87% increase on the two years prior. Besides resource exploitation and investment aimed at developing Russia’s Northern Sea shipping route, the two have been deepening security ties in the form of joint exercises in the Bering Sea.

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FILE PHOTO: Donald Trump dancing during the campaign rally for the Republican primary for the 2024 American presidential election. Manchester (NH), USA, January 20, 2024.

David Himbert / Hans Lucas via Reuters Connect

For China, Russia, and Israel, patience is a virtue in 2024

In January, Taiwan elected pro-independence candidate William Lai and, despite warnings, China’s response has been restrained, possibly influenced by Beijing’s belief that the leading US presidential candidate may treat Taiwan like a “discarded chess piece.”

That’s what Chinese Taiwan Affairs Office spokesperson Chen Binhua said would happen if Donald Trump won the US election in November after the former president refused to say whether he would defend Taiwan. His comments shook US ally Japan strongly enough that senior Kishida administration officials are reportedly contacting Trump’s camp to warn against cutting any kind of deal with China.

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William Lai (Lai Ching-Te), the candidate of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), has just been elected President of the Republic of Taiwan, succeeding outgoing President Tsai Ing-Wen. They celebrate the victory on stage at their party headquarters, with his running mate Hsiao Bi-Khim.

Jimmy Beunardeau / Hans Lucas via Reuters

Lai won in Taiwan, but Xi isn’t losing his cool

Taiwan may have elected pro-independence candidate William Lai as its next president, but the result wasn’t the worst news Beijing expected.While Lai secured a decisive win with a seven percentage point lead over his next nearest rival, his party did not fare as well. Dissatisfaction with rising house prices, stagnant wages, and shrinking job opportunities lost the party favor with young voters. Lai’s Democratic Progressive Party, or DPP, failed to get a majority of seats in the legislature. Final results gave the Kuomintang 52 seats, the DPP 51, the Taiwan People’s Party 8, and independents 2.

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When Biden met Xi (and what's going on with the US and China) | TED
When Biden Met Xi (and What's Going On with the US and China) | Ian Bremmer | TED

When Biden met Xi (and what's going on with the US and China) | TED

Better or Worse? What happened when two frenemies -- China's President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden -- met at the APEC Summit in San Francisco? Did the two superpowers move closer to conflict or actually get something positive done? What will make a difference? Ian Bremmer was in San Francisco and took in the big event, and he sits down for an exclusive conversation with GZERO's new partner, TED, to explain what it all means.

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FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Joe Biden meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the G20 leaders' summit in Bali, Indonesia, November 14, 2022.

KEVIN LAMARQUE/Reuters

Biden and Xi meet again

Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden will meet face to face tomorrow in San Francisco in the hopes of salvaging their countries’ crumbling relationship.

The two had the same goal when they met on the sidelines of the G20 last November. But after China floated a spy balloon into US airspace, the rest of the year consisted of retaliatory trade restrictions on technology and critical minerals, Chinese raids on US companies, and increasingly frequent “risky intercepts” between military forces.

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US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) and South Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin hold a joint press conference after their talks in Seoul on Nov. 9, 2023.

Kyodo via Reuters

Blinken comes home, Biden gears up for Xi

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken wrapped up a tour of Asian nations last week, as the United States worked to shore up support for its positions on issues including Russia’s war in Ukraine, China’s increased belligerence toward Taiwan, and the Israel-Hamas war in the Middle East.

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President Joe Biden shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping as they meet on the sidelines of the G20 leaders' summit in Bali, Indonesia, Nov. 14, 2022.

White House/Handout via EYEPRESS via Reuters

Viewpoint: Don’t expect too much from Xi-Biden meeting

Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping are preparing for talks next week to stabilize relations between their two countries and prevent a dangerous flare-up of hostilities over Taiwan. The meeting represents the culmination of months of preparatory work by lower-level officials and is expected to take place on Nov. 14 or Nov. 15 on the sidelines of the APEC leaders’ summit in San Francisco.

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Australia's Prime Minister Anthony Albanese meets with China's President Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, November 6, 2023.

AAP Image/Lukas Coch via REUTERS

Are China-Australia ties boomeranging back?

Anthony Albanese is the first Australian prime minister to visit Beijing since 2016, as both sides signal their readiness to work on their long-running rift. At a meeting on Monday in the Great Hall of the People, Chinese President Xi Jinping said, “the China-Australia relationship has embarked on the right path of improvement and development” after years of trade spats and accusations of political meddling.

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