Donald Trump notes Xi Jinping’s ‘extraordinary’ rise


ISLAMABAD: US President Donald Trump has congratulated Chinese leader Xi Jinping on his “extraordinary elevation” after this week’s Communist Party congress.
Mr Trump also praised Mr Xi in a TV interview in the US, and said “some might call him king of China”.
Mr Xi cemented his hold on China when he had a second five-year term confirmed, with no clear successor, at the congress. His name and doctrine have been written into the party’s constitution.
The two leaders are due to hold talks at a state visit to China next month, having met at the G20 summit in July.
The pair also discussed North Korea and trade, President Trump said in a tweet. Hours later North Korean leader Kim Jong-un also congratulated Mr Xi.
In the phone call with Mr Trump, Mr Xi expressed a desire to work with the US president to “jointly blueprint future development of China-US ties”, Chinese state media report.
Separately, Mr Trump praised Mr Xi as a “very good person” with whom he had “a very good relationship”, in an interview with Fox Business Network.
Describing Mr Xi’s elevation as something that “really virtually never happened in China”, Mr Trump called the Chinese leader “a powerful man”.
“People say we have the best relationship of any president-president, because he’s called president also. Some people might call him the king of China, but he’s called president.”
China has the world’s second-largest economy after the US, its biggest trading partner.
However, relations have been strained by Beijing’s territorial disputes in the South China Sea and East China Sea with Washington’s allies in East Asia.
Meanwhile North Korean state media agency KCNA reported that leader Kim Jong-un sent a congratulatory message to Mr Xi.
The message “expressed the conviction that the relations between the two parties and the two countries would develop in the interests” of the Chinese and North Koreans.
It also officially acknowledged Mr Xi’s political doctrine, noting that China had “entered the road of building socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era”.
Though relations have cooled in recent years, amid Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile tests, China remains North Korea’s closest ally.


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