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Newsline: China’s top diplomat plans European tour

China’s top diplomat will visit Germany and Belgium next month in a bid to reset relations with a skeptical Europe, POLITICO can disclose. (https://www.politico.eu/article/china-top-diplomat-wang-yi-xi-jinping-european-tour-thaw-relations-eu/) Wang Yi will attend the Munich Security Conference and visit the EU headquarters, according to three diplomats with knowledge of his plan, although one diplomat said the precise dates of the Brussels trip have yet to be decided. The tour represents an opportunity to overcome strains in the relationship between China and Europe, amid Beijing’s continuing support for Moscow despite Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. Wang has been promoted from foreign minister to the 24-person Politburo, the Communist Party’s ruling body, to oversee foreign affairs. He will be the highest-level official to visit Europe since the Communist Party Congress in October — which formalized Xi Jinping’s norm-breaking continuation at the helm of the world’s second-biggest economy — as well as China’s eventual end to the restrictive pandemic measures early this year.

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