China's foreign minister on Friday accused the United States of "seriously damaging" mutual trust between the two countries over the Hong Kong and Xinjiang issues, amid reports the two sides had reached a "phase one" trade deal.
Wang Yi also said during an annual speech in Beijing that US officials had "slandered China's social system, development path and cooperation with other countries".
"Such behaviour is almost paranoid, and is indeed rare in international exchanges, seriously damaging the hard-won foundation of mutual trust between China and the United States, and seriously weakening the United States' international credibility," Wang said in his review of China's diplomacy highlights and challenges for the year.
The foreign minister said there were deep-seated issues that needed to be addressed and resolved between the two sides that were presenting increasingly severe challenges to their future relationship.
"We hope that the US side will promptly calm down, take a rational view towards China and the world, and work together with China to realise a non-confrontational, mutually respectful, win-win path towards peaceful co-existence and mutual benefit," he said.
Bilateral tensions have flared between China and the US in recent months over Beijing's mass detention of Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region and ongoing anti-government protests in Hong Kong, just as the two countries tried to work out a deal to end their trade war.
The US recently introduced two pieces of legislation that could potentially target top Chinese officials with sanctions over human rights abuses in Hong Kong and Xinjiang. Beijing has strongly condemned the legislation, which it says represents serious interference in its domestic affairs.
Wang on Friday said China would "resolutely fight against external forces that interfere in Hong Kong's affairs" and "sever the black hands" supporting revolution in the city.
Last month, China called on the US military to stop flexing its muscles in the South China Sea and to avoid adding "new uncertainties" over Taiwan, which is claimed by Beijing.
The criticism from China's top diplomat underscored the strategic conflict between the two sides in areas from trade and technology to security. The dispute has seen a bipartisan effort in Washington to push back against China's expanding military and diplomatic reach and challenge its human rights record in places like the former British colony of Hong Kong.
Wang's comments came as US President Donald Trump signed off on a deal intended to be the first in a series of agreements to resolve the trade war, Bloomberg reported, citing people briefed on the matter.
Beijing has yet to comment on the agreement, which would avert the December 15 introduction of a new wave of US tariffs on about US$160 billion of Chinese consumer goods.
Wang also said China would strengthen relations with Russia and Europe. Chinese President Xi Jinping said early this month that the US was interfering in the domestic affairs of both China and Russia and the two nations needed to boost cooperation.
Additional reporting by Bloomberg
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