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China ‘won’t comment’ on US midterm elections – here’s what they said instead

Chinese President Xi Jinping (Lan Hongguang/Xinhua/Sipa USA/TNS)
November 09, 2022

A top Chinese government spokesman said he “won’t comment” on the U.S. midterm elections that concluded on Tuesday, instead offering a vision for U.S.-China relations during a press conference on Wednesday.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian called the elections “internal affairs” of the U.S. and said “the election results are to be decided by the U.S. voters.” 

A reporter from China Review News also asked Zhao for his views on the relations between the U.S. and China – two increasingly competitive superpowers – now that the elections are over. 

“Our position is consistent and clear,” he said. “We believe that a sound and steady China-US relationship serves the fundamental interests of the two peoples. It is also the common aspiration of the international community. 

“We hope the US will work with China to find the right way for our two countries to get along with each other in the new era on the basis of the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation,and bring bilateral relations back to the right track of sound and steady development.”

U.S. officials recently warned of likely Chinese interference against U.S. candidates perceived as hostile to Beijing, but had found no credible threats, AP reported. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said this week that China had played “aggressive games” in its democracy amid reports that candidates have been backed by the Chinese government, according to BBC.

China’s Xi Jinping recently secured a third term as leader of the ruling Chinese Communist Party. With the third term as party leader Xi has also paved the way for a third term as president of China. The ruling CCP has already scrapped China’s two-term presidential term limit, and Xi has consolidated his power to an extent unseen since Mao Zedong, the founder of the modern Chinese communist state.

At the press conference, Zhao had harsher words for an executive order signed by President Joe Biden on Election Day. The order – originally signed by former President Donald Trump, but extended by Biden – bans U.S. investment in Chinese companies linked to its military-industrial complex.

“The U.S. is repeating its mistake,” Zhao said. “This is a move driven by its political agenda and a wanton denial of fact and the actual situation of relevant companies. … China firmly rejects it.”