National Security Advisor Tom Donilon said informal talks between President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jingpin were “positive and constructive.” During the two-day discussions, which wrapped up June 8 in Rancho Mirage, Calif., the two leaders strongly agreed that North Korea must be denuclearized. Donilon noted there was “quite a bit of alignment on the…North Korean issue, and absolute agreement that we would continue to work together on concrete steps in order to achieve the joint goals…with respect to the North Korean nuclear program.” In addition, Obama emphasized that a “key to the future of US-China economic relations” will revolve around the resolution of theft of private and intellectual US property through cyber attacks initiated from within China, said Donilon. China agreed to look at the issue, he added. Obama and Xi also discussed a need to boost military-to-military engagements, which Donilon said “lags behind our political and our economic relationship.” He added, “This was acknowledged on the Chinese side, and we actually have some momentum behind increasing and deepening these relationships as we go forward here.” (Donilon transcript) (AFPS report)
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.