China wants to resolve problems with the United States through talks but it must respect China's choice of development path and interests, President Xi Jinping said on Thursday ahead of a meeting with the USA leader in Argentina.
However, at the same time, he said, Beijing expects Washington to respect China's security and development interests and sovereignty in the Asia-Pacific.
The Trump administration has criticized China's militarization of the South China Sea, which is a vital waterway for world trade.
Mattis repeated the position that "the United States will continue to fly, sail and operate wherever worldwide law allows". U.S. President Donald Trump has promised to fix China's "longtime abuse of the broken global system and unfair practices".
She said China should abide by the principles reached between the two countries guiding the settlement of the maritime issues and the Declaration of the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea "without complicating the situation, affecting peace, security and stability" in the South China Sea.
China's foreign ministry said Yang Jiechi met U.S. national security adviser John Bolton on Wednesday and that the two sides should "properly manage differences and carefully prepare to ensure positive results in the Argentina meeting".
Defense Minister Wei reiterated during the press conference that China would take any necessary measures to ensure the eventual unification of Taiwan is not threatened, a statement in response to the sailing of a USA warship through the Taiwan Strait for the second time in several months.
There has been a rise in negative voices on China in the USA that merit attention, Xi said. China will stick to a path of peaceful growth and of constructively developing its relationship with the US based on the principles of mutual respect and mutual benefit, the president said.
Mr. Pompeo, while interacting with the media, said, "President Trump has made it clear that the US seeks a constructive and results-oriented relationship with China grounded in fairness, reciprocity and respect". "We pressed China to live up to its past commitments in this area".
But the exchange on display before reporters served to show just how much space there is between the two sides, particularly over the South China Sea and freedom of navigation.
Branstad said they would also discuss "strategic security" and avoiding accidents between the two militaries.
Still Pompeo also was clear in addressing US concerns, including Beijing's increasingly assertive posture in the South China Sea. Wang told Kissinger that China believes the two countries could properly resolve the trade dispute through dialogue.
He also singled out Trump's decision to pursue a trade war with Beijing, saying that "a trade war, instead of leading to any solution, will only end up hurting both sides and the global economy".
China and the United States have slapped tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of each other's goods, jolting global financial markets, and Trump has threatened to set tariffs on the remainder of China's $500 billion-plus exports to the United States if the trade dispute can not be resolved.
Washington has also been increasingly critical of Chinese treatment of religious minorities, including Uygur Muslims in the western Chinese region of Xinjiang.
Yang defended China's policies in Xinjiang as measures against "ethnic separatist activities and violent terrorist crimes" but said it was a Chinese internal affair and foreign governments should not interfere. But overall, the tone of the US officials' public comments was milder than that of the Chinese.