GP Insights

"The “Insights” section aims to keep our audience informed and updated on contemporary developments in world affairs. We attempt to do this through brief reflections and trend analysis. This initiative is short and reader-friendly with a brief presentation of facts, short background and a quick analysis.

Sections of these viewpoints go as a part of our Global Politics weekly roundup called “The World This Week” sent in the form of an e-alert. If you would like to receive these Alerts as and when published, kindly send an email to subachandran@gmail.com.

GP Insights # 467, 6 February 2021

China: New Redlines on Xinjiang, Taiwan and Hong Kong, as US-China relations starts under Biden
Teshu Singh

What happened? 
On 1 February 2021, in a conversation with Jacob J. Lew, the Politburo Member and the Director of the office of the Central Committee for Foreign Affairs of the Politburo of the 19th CPC Central Committee, Yang Jiechi expounded on the state of US-China relations and prospects for the future of the bilateral relations. In his address, he cautioned the US not to cross the "red lines". 

What is the background?
First, the new redline as Beijing's signal to the larger US-China relations. China is anxious about its relations with the US under Joe Biden. The leadership of China believes that the US-China relations have reached "new crossroads" and "a new window of hope" is opening with the coming of Joe Biden. Thus, as an attempt to put forth the Chinese perspective on the evolving bilateral relation Yang Jiechi articulated his response.

Second, China would like to continue with what it has agreed with the Trump administration. There is an agreement reached in January 2020. As per the agreement, China agreed to purchase more of certain US goods and services worth USD 200 billion in 2020 and 2021 with the base year as 2017. On 13 January 2021, the US declassified "the US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific". It is rare to declassify a document before its scheduled date. The objective of declassifying the document was to put forth the official US stance in the public domain is to ensure that the administration does not retract. Perhaps, China also wants to push the same argument with force and new redlines. 

Third, China's "Wolf Warrior Diplomacy" - a euphemism for its new approach. The Chinese diplomats have been more aggressive in defending their country's interests. Yang Yechi redline statement is perhaps a part of this aggressive strategy.

What does it mean? 
Will the Biden administration go back on the Trump policies? The new administration has already reaffirmed Taiwan's enduring commitment and advised China "to cease its military, diplomatic and economic pressure." US Secretary of State Antony Blinken also said he agreed that China's actions in its western Xinjiang region should be designated as "genocide". He has also offered support to people fleeing Hong Kong, "the US should give haven to people fleeing political repression in Hong Kong. Consequently, Yang Yechi alluded to draw a "red line" on the core issues and reiterated that the US should fulfil its commitment to abide by the One-China principle.

Yang Jiechi speech was the most high-profile appeal by China to the US ever since Joe Biden took office. Through this speech, he has put the onus on the US to mend the damage caused by the "misguided policies" under the Trump administration. Furthermore, after the speech, China Daily published an article titled, "US govt urged to focus on cooperation". The article highlighted that both China and the US task to take their relationship back to "a predictable and constructive track". It stated, the two largest economies should build a model of interaction that "focuses on peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation".

To conclude, redline speech is an indication that US-China relations are not expected to be smooth.

January 2021 | GP Insights # 461
The US: Biden brings America to Paris
December 2020 | GP Insights # 451
Brexit: The trade deal may not come through

November 2020 | GP Insights # 432
India and the US sign crucial defence agreements
October 2020 | GP Insights # 421
France: New bill to prevent Islamic Separatism
October 2020 | GP Insights # 420
The US: The First Presidential Debate
September 2020 | GP Insights # 419
South Asia: Finally, a SAARC meeting

September 2020 | GP Insights # 413
California: Wildfire continues to rage
September 2020 | GP Insights # 411
BREXIT: UK's new bill renews the tensions with the EU

August 2020 | GP Insights # 407
Japan: Shinzo Abe announces resignation

August 2020 | GP Insights # 403
Greenland: The ice sheet melts at a record rate

August 2020 | GP Insights # 402
Coup in Mali: Plunging further into chaos
August 2020 | GP Insights # 394
Vietnam: The second wave
July 2020 | GP Insights # 391
Global Nuclear Security progress has slowed

May 2020 | GP Insights # 346
Europe shows the way, but with a warning
April 2020 | GP Insights # 336
Afghanistan: 300 Taliban prisoners released
April 2020 | GP Insights # 332
The US accuses the WHO of being China-centric
April 2020 | GP Insights # 328
Syria: New UN Report on Idlib
April 2020 | GP Insights # 325
A lethal impact on the Refugee/Migrant Camps
March 2020 | GP Insights # 311
US: $2.2 trillion to stimulate the economy

March 2020 | GP Insights # 304
CoronaVirus: The US-China blame game
March 2020 | GP Insights # 302
Afghanistan: 30 killed in two days
March 2020 | GP Insights # 299
China: Fall in numbers

March 2020 | GP Insights # 292
Afghanistan: The US-Taliban deal under stress
March 2020 | GP Insights # 287
Two Presidents in Afghanistan

March 2020 | GP Insights # 285
'Aurat March': A New beginning across Pakistan
March 2020 | GP Insights # 281
Coronavirus cases cross 100,000
March 2020 | GP Insights # 276
Sri Lanka withdraws from 30/1 Geneva Resolution
February 2020 | GP Insights # 272
Trump in India: Optics, Substance and Rhetoric
February 2020 | GP Insights # 269
US and Taliban sign the long-awaited peace deal
February 2020 | GP Insights # 268
Thailand: The Court dissolves the opposition party
February 2020 | GP Insights # 260
Pakistan: Court convicts LeT founder Hafiz Saeed
February 2020 | GP Insights # 259
Pakistan: Suicide terrorism returns to haunt Quetta

February 2020 | GP Insights # 258
Afghanistan: The US-Taliban Seven Day Deal
February 2020 | GP Insights # 254
General Election: Ireland turns Left, after decades
February 2020 | GP Insights # 253
Coronavirus: Seven Weeks After
February 2020 | GP Insights # 252
Israel: Violence in the post-Trump deal
February 2020 | GP Insights # 248
The US Senate acquits Donald Trump
February 2020 | GP Insights # 246
Trump's Middle East plan gains mixed responses

February 2020 | GP Insights # 245
New Delhi: Shooting in an anti-CAA rally
February 2020 | GP Insights # 243
Afghanistan: Continuing Violence
February 2020 | GP Insights # 242
Finally, the BREXIT: The “UK Dream” comes true

February 2020 | GP Insights # 240
UK and EU on 5G and Huawei
February 2020 | GP Insights # 238
Trump’s Middle East Peace Plan
January 2020 | GP Insights # 237
Libya: Peace Summit in Berlin

January 2020 | GP Insights # 236
Lebanon: A new government but crisis is worsening
January 2020 | GP Insights # 232
Lebanon: A new cabinet assisted by the Hezbollah
January 2020 | GP Insights # 229
World Economic Forum: The 50th meeting at Davos

January 2020 | GP Insights # 225
Afghanistan: Taliban's Proposal to Reduce Violence

January 2020 | GP Insights # 222
Tehran: Protests follow the Airplane shooting
January 2020 | GP Insights # 219
Taiwan: DPP returns to power with a large mandate
January 2020 | GP Insights # 217
Russia: Putin's New Democratic experiment

January 2020 | GP Insights # 216
Myanmar welcomes Xi Jinping
January 2020 | GP Insights # 210
6G Technology: China is an Early Bird
December 2019 | GP Insights # 204
The US plan against Mexican Cartels
December 2019 | GP Insights # 202
Greta Thunberg is TIME's person of the year
December 2019 | GP Insights # 201
UK: Boris Johnson wins big, gets the BREXIT mandate

December 2019 | GP Insights # 200
ICJ: Suu Kyi defends the indefensible
December 2019 | GP Insights # 199
Spain: COP 25 begins in Madrid
December 2019 | GP Insights # 198
Iran: The protests continue
December 2019 | GP Insights # 197
NATO at 70: Brain Dead and Jaws Dropped

November 2019 | GP Insights # 196
London attacks: A reality check on radicalisation
November 2019 | GP Insights # 195
Iran protests: Thousands arrested
November 2019 | GP Insights # 193
Russia Releases Ukrainian Vessels

November 2019 | GP Insights # 191
Mass Protests in Iran
November 2019 | GP Insights # 189
Protest in Georgia over constitutional reform

November 2019 | GP Insights # 188
Sri Lanka: Return of the Rajapaksas
November 2019 | GP Insights # 187
Hong Kong: Violence reaches a new high
November 2019 | GP Insights # 185
Brazil: Leaders meet for the 11th BRICS Summit

November 2019 | GP Insights # 184
Bolivia: Political crisis over elections
November 2019 | GP Insights # 183
US-China Tariff Rollback: Yes, sorry no…  
November 2019 | GP Insights # 181
India refuses to sign the RCEP 

November 2019 | GP Insights # 178
Lebanon: PM Hariri quits, but protests continue
November 2019 | GP Insights # 177
ISIS after Baghdadi

November 2019 | GP Insights # 176
UK Elections: A delayed Brexit; divided Parliament
October 2019 | GP Insights # 173
Brazil’s mysterious oil spill 

October 2019 | GP Insights # 170
Hong Kong Violence: A divide within
October 2019 | GP Insights # 168
Spain: The trouble in Catalonia
October 2019 | GP Insights # 167
Turkey's Offensive in Syria
October 2019 | GP Insights # 161
UK: Boris Johnson announces a Brexit roadmap

October 2019 | GP Insights # 160
Iraq: The Protests Now
October 2019 | GP Insights # 158
China: Celebrating 70 years
September 2019 | GP Insights # 157
UK: Parliament uproar over Boris Johnson’s language

September 2019 | GP Insights # 156
US and Japan: A limited trade agreement
September 2019 | GP Insights # 154
The UN Climate Action Summit: No Action Plan yet
September 2019 | GP Insights # 151
Climate Change protests ahead of the UN Summit
September 2019 | GP Insights # 149
Afghanistan: Taliban’s deadly strikes

September 2019 | GP Insights # 148
Israel: No clear winners in the elections
September 2019 | GP Insights # 147
An Amazon in the East: The Forest Fires in Indonesia
September 2019 | GP Insights # 144
"Glory to Hong Kong": Protesters' New Anthem
September 2019 | GP Insights # 142
Suspension of the British Parliament
August 2019 | GP Insights # 140
Italy: Experiments with a new coalition
August 2019 | GP Insights # 139
Huawei vs Google: The Saga Continues
August 2019 | GP Insights # 136
G7 Summit: Cold responses and little outcomes
August 2019 | GP Insights # 133
Italy: Political turmoil as the PM resigns

August 2019 | GP Insights # 132
Brexit: No backing out on backstop deal
August 2019 | GP Insights # 130
Brazil: The fires in Amazon goes global
August 2019 | GP Insights # 128
Jammu and Kashmir: The UNSC meeting
August 2019 | GP Insights # 127
Israel: US Congresswomen's visit denied 
August 2019 | GP Insights # 121
North Korea: Cyber theft of  $ 2 billion

August 2019 | GP Insights # 120
Hong Kong: China issues a strong warning
August 2019 | GP Insights # 118
J&K: India revokes Kashmir’s special status
August 2019 | GP Insights # 116
US Withdraws from the INF Treaty
August 2019 | GP Insights # 115
The Netherlands ban Burqa
August 2019 | GP Insights # 113
Trump imposes new tariffs on China

July 2019 | GP Insights # 106
Pakistan Airspace Reopens after five months
July 2019 | GP Insights # 105
US excludes Turkey from the F-35 program

July 2019 | GP Insights # 103
US House blocks Trump's Saudi arms deal
July 2019 | GP Insights # 101
Myanmar: US-led  sanctions will not go far

July 2019 | GP Insights # 100
Iran to breach nuclear stockpile threshold
July 2019 | GP Insights # 96
Libya: Attack on Migration Centre kills 60
June 2019 | GP Insights # 93
G20 Summit 2019 in Japan: Early takeaways

June 2019 | GP Insights # 89
Hong Kong Protests: Expanding the Goals?

June 2019 | GP Insights # 87
Protests in Georgia
June 2019 | GP Insights # 85
Xi visits North Korea

June 2019 | GP Insights # 84
Hong Kong: The Protests Escalates Further
June 2019 | GP Insights # 82
Nigeria: The Triple Suicide Bombing
June 2019 | GP Insights # 78
Xi's Visit to North Korea
June 2019 | GP Insights # 75
Sudan: African Union suspends membership
June 2019 | GP Insights # 73
The Gulf of Oman: Attack on Oil tankers

June 2019 | GP Insights # 72
Sudan: The Military orders crackdown
June 2019 | GP Insights # 70
Japan and Iran: Abe’s Peace Mission
June 2019 | GP Insights # 69
India: Two Days, Two Neighbors

June 2019 | GP Insights # 67
India's New Priority: BIMSTEC, not SAARC?
June 2019 | GP Insights # 66
China's First Orbital Sea Launch
June 2019 | GP Insights # 65
China and Russia: Xi Jinping's Moscow Visit

June 2019 | GP Insights # 63
Hong Kong: China's Game Plan
June 2019 | GP Insights # 62
India, US and the S-400: Threat of Sanctions
June 2019 | GP Insights # 61
Sudan: Clampdown on Protestors

June 2019 | GP Insights # 59
Trump's UK Visit
May 2019 | GP Insights # 48
Indonesia: Post-election violence

May 2019 | GP Insights # 44
1500 American troops to the Middle East

May 2019 | GP Insights # 36
US-China Trade Talks
May 2019 | GP Insights # 34
Sri Lanka Attacks: Deepening fault lines

May 2019 | GP Insights # 33
The Huawei Controversy in the UK
November 2018 | GP Insights # 188
Sri Lanka: Return of the Rajapaksas

Click here for old Short Notes