From October 18 to 25, China held its 19th Party Congress in Beijing, an event scheduled twice each decade to elect party leadership and set the party’s policy agenda. In a surprise move, the Congress announced its decision to include new language enshrining President Xi Jinping’s flagship foreign policy initiative, the “Belt and Road” (BRI), in its constitution. The following quotes related to the Belt and Road are drawn from Xi’s opening remarks.
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On October 3, U.S. Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis commented on China’s Belt and Road initiative during a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Chinese and Pakistani officials were quick to defend their flagship route, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).