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Australia says China’s ‘alarming’ actions at odds with peaceable rhetoric

CANBERRA: China’s “alarming” actions don’t match its rhetoric about selling peace and prosperity within the area, Australia’s defence minister mentioned on Friday (Nov 26) after a Chinese language navy ship was tracked crusing by means of the nation’s unique financial zone.

Defence Minister Peter Dutton listed China’s militarisation of the South China Sea, current aggression in direction of Taiwan and the introduction of a nationwide safety legislation in Hong Kong as examples of China’s actions being at odds with its rhetoric.

“We’re all accustomed to the frequent claims of the Chinese language authorities that it’s dedicated to peace, cooperation and improvement,” Dutton mentioned in a speech in Canberra.

“And but we bear witness to a big disconnect between the phrases and the actions. We have watched very carefully because the Chinese language authorities has engaged in more and more alarming actions.”

The Chinese language embassy in Canberra mentioned Dutton had distorted China’s international coverage, misled the Australian folks and was “fanning battle and division between peoples and nations”.

“It’s inconceivable that China-Australia relationship will tackle a very good momentum … if the Australian authorities bases its nationwide technique on such visionless evaluation and outdated mentality,” it mentioned in an announcement.

Relations between Australia and its largest export market reached a low in 2020 when Canberra backed a United Nations inquiry into the origins of COVID-19, which was first recorded in China.

China responded by reducing off ministerial contacts and imposing hefty tariffs on Australian exports of wine, barley, beef, coal and seafood, successfully nullifying a 2015 free commerce settlement. Australia and its ally the USA branded the transfer “financial coercion”.

The newest change of barbs got here as Australia confirmed it had monitored a Chinese language intelligence ship crusing in August inside Australia’s unique financial zone however not in Australian territorial waters.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison mentioned the ship – the second of its kind monitored off the Australian coast in as many months – was travelling legally.

“However do not assume for a second that we weren’t maintaining our eye on them, as they have been searching for to keep watch over us,” Morrison instructed reporters in Adelaide.

“What it demonstrates is now nobody will be complacent concerning the scenario within the Indo-Pacific.”

In September, a brand new safety pact between Australia, the USA and Britain, dubbed AUKUS, was extensively considered as an try and shore up regional army muscle within the face of China’s rising presence. China known as AUKUS a hazard to world peace.

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