US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is missing the Democratic Party convention to build ties in Asia as the US relationship with China encroaches on politics back home.
Clinton, the most travelled Secretary of State in US history, was heading Sunday from a summit in the Cook Islands to Indonesia before she meets China's top leaders Tuesday and Wednesday in Beijing.
She will represent President Barack Obama at an Asia-Pacific summit in Vladivostok on September 8-9.
The president formally launches his re-election bid at Democratic convention in North Carolina.
Since narrowly losing the party nomination to Obama in 2008, Clinton has devoted her energy to foreign policy and carefully stayed out of domestic politics —never showing an inch of public distance with her former rival while also maintaining cordial relationships with the rival Republican Party.
But China has become a focus of Republican attacks with Obama's opponent Mitt Romney vowing a harder line on issues including trade, human rights and the military balance.