Pandemic, politics drive Xi’s absence from global talks

  • In this photo released by China’s Xinhua News Agency, Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks via video link to leaders at the G20 Summit from Beijing, Sunday, Oct. 31, 2021. President Xi has been absent from the Group of 20 summit in Rome and global climate talks in Scotland, drawing criticism from U.S. President Joe Biden and questions about China’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. (Yue Yuewei/Xinhua via AP)

BEIJING — This week’s global climate talks in Scotland and the recent G-20 summit in Rome aren’t the only international meetings that China’s leader has not attended in person. Xi Jinping hasn’t left China in nearly 22 months, since January 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic first exploded.

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