Biden admitted he planned to speak to the Chinese president during virtual speeches calling for a bipartisan chip law on Monday, telling reporters: “That’s my expectation, but I’ll let you know when it’s ready.” I promise I’ll let you know.”
Pelosi’s possible trip highlights the Biden administration’s concerns about China’s plans for Taiwan, as Beijing has stepped up its rhetoric and aggressive actions against the island in recent months, including sending warplanes into Taiwan’s self-declared air defense identification zone on several occasions. US officials expressed concern that the moves could herald even more aggressive moves by China in the coming months to assert its rule over the island.
Russia’s war in Ukraine has only reinforced those fears as Biden and other senior officials watch nervously to see what lessons China can learn from the West’s response to Moscow’s aggression.
Meanwhile, Xi is believed to be laying the groundwork for an unprecedented third term in the fall, fueling tense geopolitics in the region.
Earlier, officials noted that Biden’s phone call with Xi was in the works before Pelosi’s potential visit to Taiwan became known.
This story has been updated with additional details.