Henry Kissinger, a former U.S. secretary of state, made a surprise trip to China where he met with defense and foreign affairs officials.
Kissinger, who served as secretary of state and national security adviser during the administrations of Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford, is credited with playing an important role in opening U.S.-China relations in the 1970s. His latest trip occurred at a low point in relations.
According to a readout from China’s ministry of defense, Kissinger met Tuesday with Defense Minister Li Shangfu, who is sanctioned by the United States, and said he was visiting “as a friend of China.”
“The United States and China should eliminate misunderstandings, coexist peacefully and avoid confrontation,” Kissinger said during the meeting, according to the ministry.
“History and practice have constantly proved that neither side of the United States or China can afford to take the other party as an opponent. If there is a war between the two countries, it will not bring any meaningful results to the two peoples.”