Beijing’s economic coercion is a topic that frequently comes up in conversations between the United States and its Asian allies, such as Japan and South Korea, according to a top White House national security official.
“I don’t know of too many conversations we’ve had with our Korean and Japanese counterparts where in some forms or fashion Chinese economic bullying practices don’t come up,” John Kirby, the National Security Council’s coordinator for strategic communications, told reporters in a Dec. 7 press conference.
Mr. Kirby made the comments in response to a question from NTD, sister media outlet of The Epoch Times, regarding the Chinese regime exerting economic and diplomatic pressure to block U.S. dance company Shen Yun from performing in South Korea.
As U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan heads to Seoul, South Korea, for a trilateral discussion with his counterparts from South Korea and Japan on Dec. 9, Mr. Kirby said it “wouldn’t surprise” him if Chinese economic coercion is again on the agenda.
Since its establishment in 2006 in New York, Shen Yun has been subjected to a series of sabotage campaigns orchestrated by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). The company was founded with the aim of showcasing 5,000 years of Chinese culture through dance and music. The nearly two decades of interference efforts, according to analysts, came from Beijing’s fear that the portrayal of Chinese traditions could rival its communist ideology.
In recent weeks, multiple Biden administration officials and lawmakers in Congress have expressed concerns over the underlying economic coercion of such interference activities.
During a background briefing in San Francisco ahead of a planned U.S.–China summit, a senior Biden administration official described “economic coercion” as “very damaging.”
“I think it is a concerning feature of Chinese diplomacy,” he said. “And it will be important for countries to take steps going forward to try to either work together to create greater resilience, more generally other options, but also to send a collective message that such steps are antithetical to the smooth functioning of a global capital system.”
“Bowing to the will of the CCP sets a worrisome precedent for any future policymaking at a time when South Korea must stand strong,” Ms. Steel wrote.
“The CCP should never have a say in the decisions of any nation, much less a free and democratic nation.”