United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in an interview with Associated Press has talked about the “completely dysfunctional” relationship between China and the United States of America and encouraged the world’s two biggest economies to repair ties to avoid a cold war.
Guterres made his remarks this weekend before the annual UN gathering of world leaders. The gathering will focus on the COVID-19 pandemic, climate-related concerns, and other issues across the world.
In his statement regarding the relationship between China and the U.S., Guterres added that the countries should start cooperating and negotiating regarding climate change, trade and technology, human rights, economics, online security, and sovereignty in the South China Sea.
Guterres noted, “We need to re-establish a functional relationship between the two powers” as this is “essential to address the problems of vaccination, the problems of climate change and many other global challenges that cannot be solved without constructive relations within the international community and mainly among the superpowers.”
This is not the first time that Guterres talked about China and the U.S. Two years ago, he said that there could be the risk of splitting the world into two due to tensions between Washington and Beijing as the two created rival internets, currency, trade, and financial rules.
Regarding the Cold War, Guterres said that if this happens between U.S. and China, it could be “different from the past one, and probably more dangerous and more difficult to manage.” Guterres said that the potential for a more dangerous Cold War would be because everything is more fluid now, and “even the experience that existed in the past to manage crisis is no longer there.”
The White House commented on Guterres’ remarks through Press Secretary Jen Psaki. She said: “Our relationship with China is one not of conflict but of competition. He is not looking to pursue a new Cold War with any country in the world.”
President Joe Biden, likewise, released a statement before the General Assembly saying that he does not believe in the notion of a new Cold War.