After a contentious start to their relationship, Presidents Donald Trump of the United States and Xi Jinping spoke Thursday night, the first time during Trump’s administration. At Xi’s request, Trump reaffirmed the United States’s commitment to the “One China” policy.
The “One China” policy recognizes Taiwan as part of the People’s Republic of China. The policy is the foundation of diplomatic relations with China. Trump had originally been hesitant to agree to the policy, instead hoping to use it as leverage when dealing with Xi and the Chinese government.
Trump irked the Chinese government when he took a call with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen during his transition period. It was the first call between the American and Taiwanese heads of state since 1979. The Chinese government filed a formal complaint over the call.
The White House said the call was “extremely cordial.”