China’s defence chief says U.S. has to improve bilateral relationship -Breaking
© Reuters. China’s State Councilor and Defense Minister, General Wei Fenghe spoke at a plenary during the 19th Shangri-La Dialogue. It took place in Singapore, June 12, 2022. REUTERS/Caroline Chia
By Chen Lin
(Reuters) – Wei Fenghe, the Chinese Defense Minister said Sunday that the United States should improve bilateral relations as ties are at a crucial juncture.
At an Asian security summit, China repeatedly stated that it only seeks peace and stability. He was not an aggressor. The American ambassador called upon the United States to strengthen their solidarity and fight confrontation and division.
In Lloyd Austin’s address at Saturday’s Shangri-La Dialogue, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin stated that China strongly rejected the “U.S. smearing of accusations and even threats”.
We ask the U.S. to cease smearing or containing China. You must stop interfering with China’s internal affairs. Wei, who was dressed as a general of the People’s Liberation Army, stated that the bilateral relationship could not improve.
Austin stated that there has been an alarming rise in unsafe and unethical encounters between Chinese aircraft and vessels and those from other countries. He said that America would support its allies including Taiwan.
Russia’s invading Ukraine is the main topic of this meeting. Wei said that China supports peace negotiations and opposes “providing arms, applying maximum pressure” and that China was open to talks. He stated that China did not provide any material support for Russia.
What is the cause of the crisis? This is who the real mastermind? Which party loses most? Which side stands to benefit the most? Who promotes peace, and who adds fuel to the flame? He said that he believed we all knew the answers to these questions, but he didn’t address them nor state China’s position.
Meia Nouwens, a Senior Fellow at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, said Wei’s speech was consistent with Beijing’s official line on Russia-Ukraine issues.
“He made it clear that China is not an ally but a partner with Russia. He also stated that China does not have an alliance. “They’re underlining that at the end of the day, Chinese policy has always been to pursue China’s own interests and not tie itself to those other countries.”
On Saturday, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, President of Ukraine warned that invasions of his country could threaten the rule-based order. He also stated that the world was at risk of food shortages and famine if he does not act.
Russia calls its actions in Ukraine a “special operation” that it says is not designed to occupy territory but to destroy its southern neighbour’s military capabilities and capture what it regards as dangerous nationalists.
Wei addressed the Taiwan issue by stating that China still holds a neutral position regarding the island. Beijing regards Taiwan as a province. The Chinese government desired “peaceful integration” with Taiwan, but he said that they were open to “other options”.
Wei declared that China would inevitably realize its reunification. “Those who seek Taiwan independence as a means to divide China will surely fail.”
Premier Su Tseng Chang of Taiwan stated Sunday that Taiwan does not intend to shut the doors to China. He said the island is open to engaging in goodwill and equality, without any preconditions.
At the Singapore meeting, South Korean Defense Minister Lee Jongsup stated that the country will increase its defense capabilities and collaborate closely with Japan and the United States to counter North Korea’s missile and nuclear threats. He said that the South will also support North Korea’s denuclearization.
Inia Seruiratu, Fiji’s Defense Minister said that while the Shangri-La Dialogue is focusing on military issues, there were more urgent threats.
Seruiratu stated that “machine guns, fighter jets and grey ships are not our main security concern” in the blue Pacific continent. Climate change is the greatest threat to human existence. This threatens all our dreams and hopes for success.”