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US President Joe Biden’s nominee to be director of the Central Intelligence Agency CIA, William Burns, told a Senate committee yesterday that he saw competition with China - and countering its “adversarial, predatory” leadership - as the key to U.S. national security. 

A former career diplomat during both Democratic and Republican administrations, Burns is expected to easily win confirmation to be director of the CIA. 

Testifying to the Senate committee, Burns outlined his four top priorities - “people, partnerships, China and technology” - if he is confirmed. He called China “a formidable, authoritarian adversary,” that is strengthening its ability to steal intellectual property, repress its people, expand its reach and build influence within the United States. The Senate Intelligence Committee will likely to vote on his confirmation late next week or the week after.
 
Competition with China is a top priority for the Biden administration, and for members of Congress, who want a tough line toward Beijing.



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