The Chinese leader asked Biden to halt Pelosi’s Taiwan trip, the report said

The Chinese leader asked Biden to halt Pelosi’s Taiwan trip, the report said

Chinese leader Xi Jinping asked President Joe Biden to block spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi from her controversial visit to Taiwan, according to a new report.

Xi made the request when the two leaders were on the phone July 28, but Biden responded by telling him that Congress was a separate branch of government and not under his control, a senior White House official told The Washington Post .

The talk came as Beijing issued blatant threats ahead of Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan in early August, a self-governing island that China considers part of its sovereign territory.

During the call, Biden warned Xi against taking any provocative or coercive steps in response to Pelosi’s visit to the island, the official said.

Joe Biden

Chinese leader Xi Jinping reportedly asked President Joe Biden to block spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi from her controversial visit to Taiwan

The talk came as Beijing issued blatant threats ahead of Pelosi's visit to Taiwan in early August.  Pelosi is seen above on her trip visiting Taiwanese officials

The talk came as Beijing issued blatant threats ahead of Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan in early August. Pelosi is seen above on her trip visiting Taiwanese officials

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from on Saturday morning.

The official White House reading of Biden’s July 28 call with Xi mentions no discussion of Pelosi’s then-pending visit to Taiwan.

“Regarding Taiwan, President Biden stressed that United States policy has not changed and that the United States firmly opposes unilateral efforts to change the status quo or undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” the statement said .

Publicly, Biden expressed his disapproval of Pelosi’s Taiwan visit, despite White House messages on the issue being lukewarm and muddled at times.

“The military doesn’t think it’s a good idea right now,” Biden said in July when asked about Pelosi’s plans. “But I don’t know what the status is.”

Secretly, officials in the Biden administration are said to have been frustrated by Pelosi’s trip, seeing it as needlessly exacerbating tensions with China aimed primarily at brushing up on her legacy as what is likely her last term as speaker is coming to an end.

However, although Biden is the leader of the Democratic Party and head of the executive branch of the government, he has no authority over members of Congress, including top House Democrat Pelosi.

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, left, speaks with Taiwan's Foreign Minister Joseph Wu as she prepares for her departure from Taipei on August 3

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, left, speaks with Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu as she prepares for her departure from Taipei on August 3

Beijing responded to Pelosi’s Taiwan visit and the subsequent trip by another congressional delegation with bellicose rhetoric and rabid threats.

“Those who play with fire will get burned,” a Chinese government spokesman warned.

After the visit, China encircled Taiwan with sharp military drills but fell well short of some threats from Beijing, including one to shoot down Pelosi’s plane.

China’s drills have included firing missiles over the island and repeatedly crossing the Taiwan Strait centerline, which is usually an unofficial barrier.

On Friday, US Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall said China’s actions around Taiwan “are very provocative and increase the level of risk.”

“We live in dangerous times,” Kendall told reporters on a conference call from the U.S. Pacific area of ​​Guam as part of a trip to the region that will also include Australia and Japan, according to Portal.

“The military activities in which China was engaged during the speaker’s visit increased the level of risk and violated a number of norms, crossing the line was one, firing into Japan’s exclusive economic zone was another, and firing over Taiwan itself was one other,” Kendall said.

Aircraft from the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Theater Command conduct menacing maneuvers around the island of Taiwan on August 7

Aircraft from the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Theater Command conduct menacing maneuvers around the island of Taiwan on August 7

A projectile is fired from an unspecified location in China on Aug 4 during long-range firing exercises by the Chinese PLA

A projectile is fired from an unspecified location in China on Aug 4 during long-range firing exercises by the Chinese PLA

Japan said five of the missiles launched by China landed in its economic zone.

“These are not measures aimed at promoting peace and stability in the region, they are very provocative and increase risk,” he said.

China says Taiwan is the most sensitive and important issue in its relations with the United States and has the right to ensure its security and defend its territorial integrity.

The Taiwanese government says the People’s Republic of China has never ruled Taiwan and has no right to claim it or decide its future, which can only be determined by the island’s 23 million people.

Rising tensions between the US and China appear to be encouraging closer ties between Beijing and Moscow.

The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that Xi plans to travel to Central Asia to meet with Russia’s Vladimir Putin and other leaders at a regional summit next month.