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

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Australian Minister of Protection Peter Dutton speaks throughout a information convention with Australian International Minister Marise Payne, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and U.S. Secretary of Protection Lloyd Austin (not pictured) on the State Division

By Colin Packham and Byron Kaye

CANBERRA (Reuters) – China’s “alarming” actions don’t match its rhetoric about selling peace and prosperity within the area, Australia’s defence minister mentioned on Friday after a Chinese language navy ship was tracked crusing by 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 acquainted with 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 major 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 remarks are more likely to infuriate Beijing and are available 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 suppose for a second that we weren’t retaining our eye on them, as they had been searching for to control us,” Morrison advised reporters in Adelaide.

“What it demonstrates is now nobody could be complacent in regards to the state of affairs within the Indo-Pacific.”

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 slicing 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 america branded the transfer “financial coercion”.

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

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