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China: German Foreign Minister Kicks Off Visit in Tianjin

Germany’s Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock arrived in the Chinese port city of Tianjin on Thursday to begin her three-day tour of the country.

The diplomatic trip comes amid increased Chinese military maneuvers around Taiwan, which the German Foreign Ministery condemned on Wednesday, and the wake of China’s renewed support for Russia after the invasion of Ukraine

On Thursday, Baerbock is set to visit a school in Tianjin that teaches German as part of the German Foreign Office’s PASCH initiative. She will also visit a wind turbine factory owned by a German company.

What else is on the agenda?

Baerbock is set to meet with China’s Foreign Minister Qin Gang on Friday.

The two will take a high-speed train to Beijing, around 150 kilometers (93 miles) away.

In Beijing, Baerbock is set to meet with other top Chinese officials including Vice President Han Zheng and Wang Yi, the top Chinese foreign policy official and a former foreign minister.

“For our country, a lot depends on whether we succeed in properly balancing our future relationship with China,” Baerbock said on Wednesday before departing Germany.

“Partner, competitor, systemic rival: That is the compass of European China policy. In which direction the needle will swing in the future depends in part on which path China chooses.”

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