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Balloon not to blame for Blinken's trip postponement: Editorial flash

By Zhang Zhouxiang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-02-04 11:32

Chinese and US flags flutter outside the building of an American company in Beijing, Jan 21, 2021. [Photo/Agencies]

Although China has explained clearly and unambiguously the balloon spotted in the US is a civilian vessel designed for meteorological use and its entry to the US was unintended, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken still cited it as an excuse to postpone his planned visit to China.

It is the duty of both sides' diplomatic teams to manage differences in bilateral ties and handle any unintended incidents. The fact the US' decision is based on some media outlets' hyping up of the issue makes one doubt its sincerity in putting bilateral relations back on a healthy track.

Although keeping up talks is critical for Sino-US relations, it should be conducted in an equal-footed and reciprocal way. There is no way for Washington to dictate to Beijing what to do while undermining the latter's core interests.

By sensationalizing the supposed threat of the “surveillance balloon”, US media and politicians are damaging Sino-US relations. But they should give up on their illusion of China giving up its core interests or unconditionally caving to US pressure to maintain bilateral ties.

China cherishes its relationship with the US, and that goodwill should be met in kind.

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