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China’s Wang Yi arrives in Kiribati for brief visit

Friday 27 May 2022 | Written by RNZ | Published in Kiribati, Regional


China’s Wang Yi arrives in Kiribati for brief visit
Photo: RNZ

China's foreign minister Wang Yi is in Kiribati and will be meeting with the country's President Taneti Maamau to discuss bilateral relations.

Mr Wang's short trip to Tarawa was confirmed late on Tuesday by the Kiribati government and is his second stopover in a Pacific island country after a 24 hour visit to Solomon Islands.

Local journalist Rimon Rimon said the secretive nature of the visit had angered some locals.

He said the Chinese foreign minister landed on Tarawa just after 1pm local time and was met by cabinet minister Makarite Temari.

The visit is only expected to last for four hours.

Mr Rimon said the visit by the high-level delegation is significant because a potential security deal - similar to the one between China and Solomon Islands - is likely to be on the agenda.

"All the information we tried to get from the government, they have been very secretive about it, so at this stage we do not know, the government has not disclosed what the agreements are," he said.

Mr Rimon said all government officials that meet with the Chinese delegation will go into quarantine after the meeting as the country is still under Covid-19 restrictions.