The president of the United States will have to deal with a rising and more assertive China on a wide range of issues, including Asia-Pacific security, trade, and cybersecurity. U.S.-China relations will likely continue to be a mix of competition and cooperation. The central question for bilateral relations is: Can the world’s two largest economies avoid increased competition and even conflict?
The September China-South Korea summit in Beijing catalyzed the resumption of trilateral talks with Japan in October and the launch of the China-South Korea free trade agreement in December. Beijing’s Korean engagement also included a visit to North Korea in October by Chinese Politburo Standing Committee member Liu Yunshan for 70th anniversary celebrations of the founding of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK). Despite new initiatives to expand economic cooperation, Pyongyang’s apparent defiance of Chinese diplomatic efforts on denuclearization suggests further difficulties in China-North Korea relations.
In this op-ed, Cohen discusses the challenges faced by rights lawyers in China in deciding whether they are most effective by advocating within the existing framework of laws or by trying to push against the Chinese Communist Party's control of the legal system.
The White House moved quickly to debunk North Korea's exaggerated claim that a Jan. 5 "artificial earthquake" at the site where Pyongyang had conducted three previous nuclear tests was a breakthrough detonation of a hydrogen bomb. The size of the blast was similar to that of North Korea's January 2013 test and had a yield thousands of times lower than the yield expected of a hydrogen blast. But in downplaying North Korea's claim so as not to feed Kim Jong-un's cravings for international attention, the Obama administration risks underplaying the growing danger posed by North Korea's unchecked efforts to develop nuclear and missile capabilities needed to threaten a nuclear strike on the United States.
Joshua Kurlantzick looks at current U.S. policy toward China and argues that not only does it alienate allies, but takes U.S. diplomats, money and arms away from places that truly matter, and that in some places America would do best to let China win.
Chinese land reclamation in the South China Sea as well as local opposition to Tokyo’s plans for building a new airfield to replace the U.S. Marines’ Futenma facility are the two main challenges for Washington and Tokyo in the new year, writes Sheila A. Smith, senior fellow for Japan studies.
Given the complex politics of the India–Pakistan relationship, the United States does not play a role in their bilateral talks, but Washington can certainly take steps to help prevent spoilers from once again disrupting a dialogue process that deserves every chance to succeed.
The governments of Japan and South Korea discussed the trafficking of South Korean sex slaves (known as "comfort women") in Japan during World War II. Japan agreed to provide reparations to surviviors which the government of South Korea would distribute; South Korea agreed to review the placement of a memorial statue dedicated to comfort women, which is near the Japanese Embassy in Seoul.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative reports annually to Congress on China's compliance with its World Trade Organization (WTO) obligations, based on China's policies and practices. The first report in 2004 was released exactly three years after China’s accession to the WTO.
In October, the Chinese Communist Party announced the end of its one-child policy—which has spurred relentless criticism from human rights advocates since its enactment in 1979—and the launch of a new rule permitting married couples to have up to two children. In China, many reacted with joy at the news of this policy shift.
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