US President Joe Biden on Tuesday called Chinese President Xi Jinping a 'dictator' after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken paid a visit to Beijing in a bid to moderate long-strained Sino-US relations.
Biden also said Xi was very embarrassed when a suspected Chinese spy balloon was blown off course over US airspace early this year, making a personal comment on the Chinese leader when Blinken said on Monday the "chapter" should be closed.
"The reason why Xi Jinping got very upset in terms of when I shot that balloon down with two box cars full of spy equipment in it was he didn't know it was there," Biden said at a fundraiser in California.
"That's a great embarrassment for dictators. When they didn't know what happened. That wasn't supposed to be going where it was. It was blown off course," Biden added.
Biden also said China "has real economic difficulties".
Xi did not comment on being called a "dictator" after his meeting with Blinken. However, tensions between Beijing and Washington are not expected to ease after Biden's remarks.
Source: Reuters - India Today