Prime Minister Scott Morrison says Australia’s pursuit of its national interests on the world stage has been wrongly interpreted as siding with the United States over China, declaring his government will not make a “binary choice” between the superpowers.
In fresh attempts to thaw the frosty relationship between Canberra and Beijing, Mr Morrison used a speech to a British think tank to declare the most significant geopolitical challenge of the future would be dealing with the complexities of tensions between the world’s largest economic and military powers.
PM Scott Morrison: “We are not, and have never been, in the economic containment camp on China.”CREDIT:JOE ARMAO
Mr Morrison said it was wrong to describe the strategic competition between Washington and Beijing as a new Cold War, with the world no longer divided into two blocs with their own economic realm.
SOUTH CHINA SEA – After conducting its fourth routine transit through the Taiwan Strait this year, Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Barry (DDG 52) returned to South China Sea, Nov. 21, to conduct maritime security operations and promote peace and stability in the region.
“A continued presence in the South China Sea is vital in maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific,” said Cmdr. Chris Gahl, Barry’s commanding officer. “The freedom of all nations to navigate in international waters is critically important. Barry’s transit of the Taiwan Strait yesterday ensured the right and instills the confidence of all nations to trade and communicate in the South China Sea.”
President-elect Joe Biden is likely to mobilize the power of multilateral mechanisms to deal with the South China Sea and other issues involving China, analysts say.
“I expect President-elect Biden will be considerably more hawkish on China than some fear, the entire Democratic Party has shifted in that direction given China’s moves in the South China Sea, Xinjiang, Hong Kong,” Gregory Poling of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a U.S. think tank, told VnExpress International.
U.S. President-elect Joe Biden (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have a history of working together, but the U.S.-China relationship is much more fractured now than it was when Biden was vice president under Barack Obama. Photo by Reuters/Lintao Zhang.
Canadian defense minister Harjit Sajjan has made it clear that his nation is against militarization in the South China Sea.
“Canada opposes unilateral actions that have escalated tensions in the region and undermined stability in the South China Sea. We are against the threat or use of force, large-scale land reclamation, building outposts on disputed entities and using them for military purposes in the sea,” he said.
The Canadian Minister of National Defense was speaking at the 12th South China Sea International Conference held November 16-17 in Hanoi. Vietnam calls the waterway the East Sea.
NEW DELHI: The navies of India, the United States, Australia and Japan held exercises Tuesday (Nov 17) in the Northern Arabian Sea in the second phase of a naval drill seen as part of a regional initiative to counter China’s growing assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific.
The Malabar naval exercise “highlights enhanced convergence of views amongst the four vibrant democracies on maritime issues,” India’s Defense Ministry said.
This is the second time that the four countries — an informal grouping known as the Quad — have participated in a combined military exercise of this size. The first phase of the Malabar drill took place Nov 3-6 in the Bay of Bengal.
Vietnam’s Communist Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong (centre) walks past flags of the Asean member countries before opening the 37th Asean in Hanoi on Thursday. It was followed by other related meetings, including the East Asia Summit on Saturday. (Reuters photo)
Asia-Pacific leaders voiced concern over the situation in the resource-rich South China Sea at a regional summit on Saturday, a Japanese government official said, as security tensions between the United States and China have shown no sign of easing.
The United States is expected to take a more contained approach to the South China Sea under Joe Biden, but the disputed waters will remain a potential hotspot in the relationship between Beijing and Washington, observers say.“I think he [Biden] will take a different approach to [US President Donald] Trump,” said Wu Shicun, head of the National Institute of South China Sea Studies, which advises the government.“He is likely to pay more attention to the South China Sea but his policies will be more balanced and more contained.”
TĐH: Woody Island, also called Yongxing Island (simplified Chinese: 永兴岛; traditional Chinese: 永興島; pinyin: Yǒngxīng Dǎo; lit.: ‘Eternal Prosperity Island’) in People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Phu Lam Island (Vietnamese: Đảo Phú Lâm) in Vietnam, is the largest of the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea (SCS), with an area of 2.1 square kilometres (0.81 sq mi). Wooddy Island and the rest of Paracels were taken by China’s intrusion forces from The Republic of Vietnam (Việt Nam Cộng Hòa) in the Paracel Battle of Jan. 1974. War of Aggression to take a disputed territory is a violation of the Charter of the United Nations, and cannot constitute a legitimate an legal possession of the territory. See China’s Three Wars of Aggression against the Vietnamese People)