International

Kerry tells China climate change is a ‘threat to humankind’

US climate envoy John Kerry said on Tuesday that global warming represented a “threat to all of humankind” and required “global leadership” as he met Chinese officials in Beijing. “Climate, as you know, is a global issue, not a bilateral issue. It’s a threat to all of humankind,” Kerry told China’s top diplomat Wang Yi, stressing it was “a matter of global leadership”. “We’re very hopeful that this can be the beginning not just of a conversation between you and me and us on the climate track, but that we can begin to change the broader relationship, the world really hopes for that and needs it,” he added.

On fraught China-US ties more broadly, Kerry underlined that President Joe Biden was “very committed to stability within this relationship, but also to achieve efforts together that can make a significant difference to the world”.

“The president is very intent, he values his relationship with President Xi (Jinping) and I think President Xi values his relationship with President Biden, and I know he looks forward to being able to move forward and change the dynamics,” he said.

“Our hope is now that this can be the beginning of a new definition of cooperation and of capacity to resolve the differences between us,” he added, noting that “we both know there are real differences”.

“But we also know from experience that if we work at it, we can find the path ahead and ways that resolve these challenges.”

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