Updated 8:44 AM EDT, Wed, Aug 18, 2021

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Chinese President Xi Jinping to Attend Nuclear Security Summit in Washington

 President Xi Jinping

(Photo : Reuters) Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to attend the US-led Nuclear Security Summit in Washington in March.

Amid Beijing's repeated refusal to impose sanctions against North Korea over its latest nuclear test this month, Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to attend the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington this March.

It will be President Xi's second visit to the US in less than a year after his state visit to the country in September 2015.

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Nuclear security summit

Reports said defense and military experts from both sides as well as Chinese academics all agree that Xi 'would probably go' to the summit following the two countries' agreement to deepen cooperation on nuclear security during Xi's first US state visit,

Although Beijing has not yet confirmed Xi's attendance, several military and defense analysts working for the government said Xi is expected to fulfill the cooperation agreement on nuclear security he signed with US President Barack Obama.

Common interests

"The two countries share common interests in intercepting nuclear terrorism, so I think there is plenty of room for cooperation on it, among other issues," said Zhang Tuosheng, from the China Foundation for International and Strategic Studies.

Meanwhile, the White House has also announced that Washington and Beijing are slated to meet before the summit to discuss nuclear security.

Opposing sides

Political observers say the US and China - both permanent  members of the UN Security Council - have been on opposing sides on nuclear security especially when it comes to stopping North Korea from conducting nuclear tests and amassing nuclear weapons and missiles.

Former US undersecretary of defense Douglas Feith expressed dismay about China's inability to rein in North Korea and Beijing's open resistance to the international community's calls to punish Pyongyang.

"Why China seems to be more interested in denying cooperation with the US on North Korea issues rather than exerting itself in this area is a mystery to me," he said.

Chinese political and foreign policy strategists have taken up the cudgels for Beijing saying that China has already put much pressure on the North and has made denuclearization in the region a top priority.

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