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Trade war

Xi picks his battles to make progress on trade

Attack on 'protectionism' takes back seat to Beijing's other interests

Chinese President Xi Jinping and other top Chinese officials attend a working dinner with U.S. President Donald Trump in Buenos Aires on Dec. 1.   © Reuters

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- In the lead-up to Saturday's summit that yielded a temporary truce in Sino-American trade war, Chinese President Xi Jinping carefully executed a public relations strategy to help smooth over past rifts.

Around 5:30 p.m. on the big day, a black car carrying none other than Xi pulled into the hotel where U.S. President Donald Trump was staying. Highly face-conscious Chinese leaders rarely hold meetings with counterparts on what could be considered the latter's territory.

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