China demands US halt Olympics ‘interference’

China is demanding the U.S. end “interference” in the Beijing Winter Olympics, which begin next week

Foreign Minister Wang Yi made the demand in a phone call with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Thursday Beijing time, according to a news release posted on the Foreign Ministry’s website.

The boycott does not prevent U.S. athletes from taking part in the Games, which are being held under strict anti-pandemic restrictions. China has also protested what it says are calls within the State Department to withdraw staff and their dependents from the embassy and consulates around China over the tightening rules.

Wang also complained that the U.S. hasn’t altered tough political and economic policies toward China under the administration of President Joe Biden, despite its expressed wishes for a less confrontational relationship.

The phone call follows the appointment of veteran diplomat Nicholas Burns as the new U.S. ambassador to China, a position that has remained empty for more than a year.

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