Q：Can I ask a follow-up? The meeting over the weekend — last week, with the Chinese (inaudible)
MS. PSAKI: Sure.
Q：the Chinese delegation in Alaska. Did the President get what he wanted out of that meeting? Does he have any response to what came from it? And where does it leave the countries now, going forward? For instance, is the prospect of some sort of bilateral meeting between President Biden and President Xi now more or less likely? Is there anything you can give us on that?
MS. PSAKI: Well, we expected tough and direct talks with the PRC on a wide range of issues, and that’s exactly what happened.
And I know there has been a lot of focus on some of the public theatrics or, you know, more dramatic public piece, but I can assure you from talking to our national security team that it was a substantive meeting. It was a two-day meeting. They covered a range of issues, from our concerns about human rights abuses; to aggression in Hong Kong, Taiwan — our concerns there; economic — our concerns about economic and intellectual property. And we also, of course, talk about ways we can work together.
So we’re taking stock of where we are. This is where we are now. I expect the President will certainly be talking with his national security team — well, Jake Sullivan and Tony Blinken, our Secretary of State and National Security Advisor who traveled. And we will have close consultation with allies and partners on the way forward. We’ll continue to work with China, of course, going forward, where it’s in the interests of the American people.
But in terms of next steps, Anchorage was a standalone meeting, and we don’t have anything more to determine about what’s next.
Q：And today, the U.S., EU, and other countries announced new sanctions on China —
MS. PSAKI: Yeah.
Q：— with respect to human rights abuses. Did anything happen — that happened in Anchorage affect that? In other words, would the U.S. have not participated in that had certain conditions been met? Is there any link between the two?
And what next steps do you think — China has retaliated against the EU. Do you expect U.S. retaliation? And is there any more sanctions that you would do if they don’t act to change course with respect to the treatment of these minority groups?
MS. PSAKI: Well, on the first question, I’m not aware of any linkage or plans to pull that back. Obviously, this was a reaction to what we felt were serious human rights abuses — and, obviously, the Europeans felt this as well — against members of Xinjiang’s ethnic and religious minority groups. And no meeting would change our concerns related to that.
And we took action, as you noted, in unity with the United Kingdom, Canada, and the European Union, who also acted against human rights abusers in connection with these atrocities. You know, this demonstrates our ongoing commitment to work multilaterally to advance respect for human rights, and we continue to have grave concerns about China’s crimes against humanity and genocide on Uyghurs in Xinjiang.
But I don’t have anything to predict for you on future sanctions. Obviously, this is an issue that was raised in this meeting last week and was an issue that was raised by the President in his conversation with President Xi just a few weeks ago.
Q：What will the U.S. do, if anything, if China doesn’t change its approach? Is this, sort of, a one-stop sanction? Or down the road, will this be revisited and are further sanctions possible? I mean, they’ve given no indication that they would change approach; in fact, they have more or less doubled down that they’re doing nothing wrong with respect to these minority groups.
MS. PSAKI: Well, clearly, sanctions are meant to deter behavior, but I’m not going to rule in or rule out any actions when we’re at — not even day 60. What day are we at? Sixty-two? I’m not even sure — of the administration.
I can assure you that, obviously, this is — again, we will be evaluating what the appropriate next steps are in close coordination with our partners and allies around the world. And as Secretary of State noted in his comments after this meeting, we are certain that the Chinese are noting that we are working much more closely with our allies and partners than had happened over the last four years, that we are focused on taking steps to invest in and improve our economic competition here at home. Those are all steps we are certain they’re taking note of.