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Pompeo Says Trump Team ‘Not Finished Yet’ With China Moves

Bloomberg logo Bloomberg 11/11/2020 Bloomberg News

(Bloomberg) -- Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said the U.S. is “not finished yet” when it comes to getting tough on China, with just over two months left in the Trump administration.

Pompeo used some of his strongest rhetoric to date to describe the Chinese government in a Tuesday speech to the Ronald Reagan Institute detailing the administration’s China policies. He called the Chinese Communist Party a “Marxist-Leninist monster” whose rule is “authoritarian, brutish and antithetical to human freedom.”

In a separate briefing, Pompeo announced that Undersecretary of State Keith Krach would lead the U.S.’s Economic Prosperity Partnership Dialogue with Taiwan on Nov. 20. Krach made a high-profile visit to the island in September.

Taiwanese Vice Economic Minister Chen Chern-chyi will lead a delegation to Washington for the dialogue, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Taipei said in a statement on its website. Other Taiwanese officials will join the meeting via video conference.

Zhu Fenglian, a spokeswoman for the Taiwan Affairs Office in Beijing, told a briefing Wednesday that China “firmly opposes any form of official exchanges between the Taiwan region and the United States.”

Pompeo’s remarks came a day after the U.S. imposed sanctions on four more officials accused of undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy, and signal that the Trump administration is ready to keep hitting out at China even after Joe Biden won last week’s presidential election.

Quoting from former President Ronald Reagan’s remarks on the Soviet Union, Pompeo predicted the eventual exit of China from one-party rule.

Mike Pompeo wearing a suit and tie: U.S. Secretary Of State Mike Pompeo Visits Rome © Bloomberg U.S. Secretary Of State Mike Pompeo Visits Rome

Michael Pompeo

Photographer: Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg

“In the end the people of China, just like the people of the Soviet Union, will ultimately be determinative of the course of history of that country,” he said.

Pompeo said his approach to China had been determined in part by his time as the head of the Central Intelligence Agency starting in 2017.

“As CIA director, I got the chance to see first hand what these characters were up to,” he said of China’s leaders.

‘Common Enemy’

The secretary of state’s attacks on the Chinese Communist Party and its leaders have made him a favorite target of Beijing. China’s foreign ministry has branded him “ignorant,” while commentaries in state media have called him “evil” and a “common enemy of mankind.”

Pompeo did not mention the outcome of the election or President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede. He described U.S. democracy as a “shining city on a hill” and said “the world needs us to live up to our providential promise.”

(Updates with comment from Taiwanese Foreign Ministry and China’s Taiwan Affairs Office from fourth paragraph. An earlier version of this story was corrected to say that Keith Krach will lead Economic Prosperity Partnership Dialogue with Taiwan but not travel to the island.)

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