'We will not stand down,' VP Pence warns China

Pence on Thursday said "there is a new consensus on China rising across America", where more business leaders are "thinking twice before diving into the Chinese market if it means turning over their intellectual property or abetting Beijing's oppression".

Amid unprecedented tensions between the two nations, Pence accused China of trying, among other things, to influence the midterm elections to the extent that all the efforts perpetually undertaken by malicious Russian actors to obfuscate American minds and undermine USA democracy "pales" in comparison.

The allegations have raised questions about whether Mr Trump and his aides are trying to deflect attention from an investigation into his campaign's possible ties to Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, and also set China up for the blame if Republicans do poorly in next month's elections.

Pence asserts that China's actions surpass those of Russian Federation in trying to shape American opinion. The Ministry also slammed the accusations that China is somehow trying to meddle in U.S. internal affairs, noting that it has "no interest" in local American infighting. "As a senior career member of our intelligence community recently told me just this week, what the Russians are doing pales in comparison to what China is doing across this country and the American people deserve to know".

Speaking before the Economic Club of Washington, Kudlow - using language with echoes of the Iraq war - spoke of a "trade coalition of the willing to confront China".

"The worldwide community has already seen very clearly in the end who is invading the sovereignty of other countries, interfering in their internal affairs, and damaging their interests".

China has maintained a calm tone as U.S. language escalates.

He said Beijing had "mobilized covert actors, front groups, and propaganda outlets to shift Americans" perception of Chinese policies' and was targeting its tariffs to hurt states where Trump has strong support.

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The speech, which will likely strain relations further, came days after a Chinese military vessel almost collided with a US Navy ship in the waters around the disputed Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. "China wants to turn these voters against our administration".

Whereas Pence accused China of "reckless harassment" by increasing its military presence in the South China Sea, he said the United States "will not be intimidated" and "will not stand down", even as a Chinese and American warships came within 50 yards of one another this week in those waters.

Such paid supplements by foreign governments are commonplace in USA newspapers, but Pence complained that the United States was not allowed to print similar advertisements in China's state-controlled press.

They also said it was the first time a senior US official had delivered such a "broadside" against China on an array of issues.

"Despite such reckless harassment, the United States Navy will continue to fly, sail and operate wherever worldwide law allows and our national interests demand".

Can the U.S. and China resolve their differences?

In the speech, Pence also made reference to Chinese authorities' threats to USA companies - such as Delta Airlines - forcing them to list Taiwan as part of China on their websites.

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