Top House Intel Committee Republican pushes for confidential briefing on Biden-Xi phone call.

Top House Intel Committee Republican pushes for confidential briefing on Biden-Xi phone call.

In a request for a classified briefing on the phone call between President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping last week, the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee says the panel needs to know what consequences the Biden administration presented to Beijing if they chose to assist Russia in its invasion of Ukraine.

Mike Turner, R-Ohio, said understanding what transpired on President Biden’s phone discussion with Chinese President Xi Jinping is “absolutely essential” during an interview with Fox News on Thursday at the House Republican Issues Conference.

“Our committee has not been briefed on it and this is certainly relevant for our committee to understand both what the president laid out to China, and what President Xi’s responses were on if China should assist Russia militarily,” Turner told Fox News.

“There should be absolute consequences to China,” Turner said. “China has made statements that they do not want to be in a conflict with Ukrainians, but arming Russia would have them enter that.”

Members of the Intelligence Committee, according to Turner, “have no transcript of the call” and “have no information as to what even were the parts of what Biden intended to suggest would be the consequences to China,” according to Turner.

According to Turner, “they are extremely significant details that we must be brought up to speed on.”

“The call contains crucial material relevant to the future of U.S.-China relations and the current war in Ukraine,” Turner stated in a formal request for a briefing from White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan on Thursday.

“I am very concerned that he has portrayed weakness with regard to China, as he has done with regard to Russia,” Turner added. “And that has the potential to lead to an even greater escalation.”

Biden and Xi held a nearly two-hour video conference chat last Friday, which was protected by encryption.

On this incident, the White House stated that Vice President Biden “outlined the views of the United States, our allies, and partners.”

“President Biden described our efforts to avoid and then respond to the invasion, including by putting costs on Russia,” according to a statement from the White House.

As the White House explained, “the president reiterated his support for a diplomatic solution to the problem.” “The two leaders also agreed that it is critical to keep open lines of communication in order to manage the competition between our two countries,” the statement said.

While this was going on, the White House stated that Biden “reiterated that United States policy on Taiwan has not changed, and underscored that the United States continues to reject any unilateral changes to the status quo.”

“The two presidents directed their teams to follow up on today’s conversation during the important period ahead,” according to the White House statement.

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated shortly after the meeting’s conclusion that Xi stressed the “serious problems” that exist around the world.

“The Ukraine situation is something that we do not want to see,” Xi was quoted as saying by the Chinese Foreign Ministry. “Relevant events have demonstrated time and time again that state-to-state relations cannot be brought to the brink of confrontation. Conflict and confrontation are not in the best interests of any party involved. Global peace and security are among the most highly prized possessions of the international community.”

According to a statement released by the Chinese Foreign Ministry, “as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and the world’s two largest economies, we must not only guide the development of China-US relations in the right direction, but also shoulder our due international responsibilities and make efforts for world peace and tranquility.”

Following its invasion of Ukraine, Russian intelligence authorities said that the country had requested military and economic assistance from China. Officials from the United States have been reluctant to provide specifics about the type of assistance they are seeking in order to safeguard intelligence sources.

Following Moscow’s multi-front war against Ukraine, a senior administration official stated this week that the Biden administration had “grave worries” about China’s “alignment” with Russia.

Following a meeting with his Chinese counterpart, Yang Jiechi, director of the Chinese Foreign Affairs Commission, on Monday in Rome, Italy, the official expressed his concerns.

Meanwhile, if Republicans win a majority of seats in the House of Representatives following the November midterm elections, Turner has pledged to return the House Intelligence Committee’s attention to what it was “supposed to be” focused on.

According to Turner, “this committee is designed to be focused on national security, and that is exactly what we are going to focus on.”

Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., has served as the committee’s chairman since January 2019.

According to Turner, “our efforts will be focused on linking intelligence to policy and decision-making.” “As a result, in addition to focusing on national security, our goal will be to ensure that the information we receive as notifications is forwarded to Congress and that it is distributed to the appropriate committees for decision-making, legislation, and funding the appropriate programs and initiatives to keep our country safe.”