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China Seeks to Calm U.S. Tension Even While Firing Back at Trump

  • Chinese diplomats relay Beijing’s desire for better ties
  • Calculus could change rapidly if Trump continues his assault
Yang Jiechi in 2018.
Yang Jiechi in 2018.Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg
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Even as China continues to return fire at the Trump administration, leaders in Beijing are also signaling they want to ease tensions with the U.S. as the clock ticks down to the presidential election.

Trump’s moves to ban popular Chinese apps TikTok and WeChat ahead of sending the highest-ranking American official to Taiwan in 40 years -- which included a meeting Monday with President Tsai Ing-Wen -- drew a relatively muted response from China’s foreign ministry and its top diplomats.