Biden Administration Begins Trade Dialogue With Taiwan

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration on Wednesday said that it would pursue negotiations to strengthen trade and technology ties with Taiwan, a move that is aimed at countering China’s influence in the Asia-Pacific region and one that is likely to rankle Beijing. The announcement follows the Biden administration’s efforts to build an Asia-Pacific economic bloc, known as the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, that includes 13 countries and excludes Taiwan. China claims the island, a self-governing democracy that is critical to global technology supply chains, as an incontestable part of its territory.…

Chinese Tennis Star, Zheng Qinwen, Emerges During French Open

chinese tennis star zheng qinwen emerges during french open

PARIS — To keep things simpler for her Mandarin-challenged Western friends, the rising Chinese tennis star Zheng Qinwen often goes by the nickname Ana. But if you watch the teenage Zheng hit a forehand, a serve or just about any shot on a tennis court, her first English-language nickname seems more appropriate. “At the real beginning at IMG, they called me Fire,” she said in an interview at the French Open on Friday, referring to her management company, IMG. There is indeed plenty of power and passion in Zheng’s game,…

U.N. Human Rights Chief to Make First Trip to China Since 2005

GENEVA — Michelle Bachelet, the United Nations’ top human rights official, will next week visit China, including its troubled western region of Xinjiang, on a trip that rights activists say holds significant risks for the credibility of her office. The trip by Ms. Bachelet will be the first official visit to China by a U.N. high commissioner for human rights since 2005, after years of discussions with Beijing to arrange it. But only sketchy details have emerged about what she will do and hopes to achieve in China, which has…

As China Doubles Down on Lockdowns, Some Chinese Seek an Exit

Clara Xie had long wondered whether she might leave China one day. She chafed at the country’s censorship regime, and as a lesbian, she wanted to live in a country more accepting of same-sex relationships. Still, the idea felt distant — she was young, and didn’t even know which country she would choose. The coronavirus, and China’s stringent efforts to stop it, thrust the question to the front of her mind. Two years of travel restrictions have made it impossible for Ms. Xie, 25, to see her girlfriend, who lives…

Economic Headwinds Mount as Leaders Weigh Costs of Confronting Russia

The interruption of wheat exports from Ukraine and Russia, which together account for 28 percent of global exports, along with supply chain disruptions, a severe drought in India that has caused it to ban shipments of grain and Covid-related lockdowns in China, are also causing food prices to spiral and increasing global hunger, particularly in Africa and the Middle East. The question for both American and European policymakers is how to corral leaping prices without sending their economies into recession. The Federal Reserve has begun raising interest rates to tame…

U.S. Accuses Steve Wynn of Lobbying Trump on Behalf of China

The Justice Department sued the former casino mogul Stephen Wynn on Tuesday, saying he had made repeated requests on behalf of the Chinese government to Donald J. Trump when he was president and seeking to force Mr. Wynn to register as a foreign agent. In 2017, Mr. Wynn pushed Mr. Trump to deport a Chinese businessman who had sought asylum in the United States, according to the lawsuit. At the time, Mr. Wynn was the finance chairman of the Republican National Committee, a role he had been handpicked for by…

Shanghai Declares Victory in Covid Outbreak, but Lockdowns Continue

Shanghai health officials said on Tuesday that the city had brought the Covid outbreak there under control, after a nearly two-month lockdown that disrupted residents’ access to food and medicine, stoked widespread public outrage and brought China’s financial center to a standstill. At a news conference, officials pledged to restart normal life as soon as possible, with a goal of reopening fully by June. Some businesses, bus lines and parks had been allowed to resume operations on Monday. Twelve trains were also allowed to leave from Shanghai’s Hongqiao train station…

Students Protest Covid Lockdowns at Elite Beijing University

A group of students at a campus of China’s elite Peking University protested strict Covid-19 lockdown requirements on Sunday, arguing that the measures were poorly communicated and unfair. The government quickly moved to censor videos and photos that spread on China’s internet. The students were upset that they were unable to order food and that they were required to isolate, while teachers and their families were allowed to leave the campus freely, according to posts on a school forum and one student. The authorities tried to put up a wall…

Your Friday Evening Briefing

(Want to get this newsletter in your inbox? Here’s the sign-up.) Good evening. Here’s the latest at the end of Friday. 1. Sanctions hit President Vladimir Putin’s former wife and his rumored girlfriend. Britain added Putin’s former wife, Lyudmila Ocheretnaya, and the woman long considered to be his mistress, Alina Kabaeva, to its sanctions list as the West deepened its efforts to combat Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. A former K.G.B. operative, Putin has kept his personal life shrouded in secrecy, but the sanctions are lifting that veil. On the battlefields,…

The World Tries to Move Beyond Covid. China May Stand in the Way.

As the rest of the world learns to live with Covid-19, China’s top leader, Xi Jinping, wants his country to keep striving to live without it — no matter the cost. China won a battle against its first outbreak in Wuhan, Mr. Xi said last week, and “we will certainly be able to win the battle to defend Shanghai,” he added, referring to the epicenter of the current outbreak in China. But pressure is mounting for a change to the zero-Covid strategy that has left Shanghai at a standstill since…

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