Pentagon, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs discuss ties

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Pentagon’s top official for Asia spoke with an official from China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Pentagon said on Wednesday, in a rare high-level conversation between senior U.S. and Chinese national security officials.

“Assistant Secretary Ratner and Director Yang discussed U.S.-PRC defense relations, as well as regional security issues,” a Pentagon spokesperson said in a statement.

He was referring to the assistant secretary of defense for Indo-Pacific security affairs, Ely Ratner, and People’s Republic of China Ministry of Foreign Affairs Department of North American and Oceanian Affairs Director-General Yang Tao.

“The Assistant Secretary also emphasized the Department’s ongoing commitment to maintaining open lines of military-to-military communication between the United States and the PRC,” the spokesperson added.

(Reporting by Idrees Ali and Phil Stewart; Editing by Leslie Adler)