The United States is trying, as part of its Indo-Pacific
strategy to form a bloc similar to NATO in the Asia-Pacific region, Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang told reporters at a briefing.
“The Indo-Pacific strategy of the United States is presented as free and open, but in reality it puts together groups, organizes various closed exclusive factions;
proclaims the protection of regional security, but in fact provokes confrontation and plans the creation of an Asia-Pacific version of NATO;
preaches the desire for regional prosperity, but, in fact, wants to split and undermine the process of regional integration,” the diplomat said.
The Chinese foreign minister added that the goal of the US Indo-Pacific strategy is to contain China.
“Asia should be an arena for mutually beneficial cooperation, not a chessboard for geopolitical games.
The restoration of the Cold War in Asia in any form cannot be allowed, and the crisis according to the Ukrainian scenario should not be repeated in Asia,” he added.
A similar point of view is shared in Russia.
Thus, Russian Ambassador to China Igor Morgulov noted in an interview with the international Chinese television channel CGTN that the West is trying to undermine the security and cooperation structure that has developed in the Asia-Pacific region, offering instead a new system based on NATO.
“Repeatedly expressed bewilderment why NATO is rushing into the Asia-Pacific region.
At the Madrid summit in June last year, the North Atlantic Alliance has already officially announced that now its area of responsibility becomes global.
This raises a lot of questions for us,” he said.
The Russian diplomat stressed that one of the new formations similar to NATO that the United States is creating in the region is the AUKUS military-technological bloc, which includes the United States, Great Britain and Australia.
“Formally, all this is furnished with the pretext of creating an Australian nuclear submarine fleet.
But it is clear that behind these steps there are far-reaching plans to bring the military-technological potential of NATO to the region,” Morgulov said.
He also added that the activities of AUKUS will not bring any benefit to the security of the Asia-Pacific region.
“And like any military alliance, it must justify its existence by creating new problems, undermining peace and stability where it is,” the Russian ambassador to China emphasized.
Recall that the leaders of the United States, Great Britain and Australia announced the creation of the AUKUS partnership (named after the first letters in the names of these countries in English) in September 2021.
As part of this association, the states plan to deepen military and military-technical cooperation, which is in the interests of promoting peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.
The first initiative under AUKUS was an agreement under which Australia would gain access to nuclear submarine building technology.
It is assumed that the new nuclear submarines will be built at Australian shipyards using technologies received from Washington and London.
Beijing called the establishment of AUKUS an irresponsible move and a threat to regional security.
In turn, the Russian Foreign Ministry has repeatedly emphasized that the transfer of nuclear submarine construction technologies to Australia within the framework of AUKUS actually undermines the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and creates the preconditions for the emergence of a military nuclear infrastructure in this country.
© Manu Fernandez
It is worth noting that at the end of January 2023, the UK Parliament proposed expanding the AUKUS partnership with new countries.
Thus, the head of the House of Commons Defense Committee, Tobias Ellwood, proposed connecting India and Japan to the partnership.
At the same time, India, Japan and Australia are already members of another regional association in the Asia-Pacific region under the auspices of Washington - the so-called Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD), or the Quartet.
Earlier, China also reacted negatively to NATO's attempts to strengthen its influence in the Asia-Pacific region by drawing New Zealand, Australia, South Korea and Japan into its orbit.
Recall that representatives of these countries were invited to the big summit of the alliance in Madrid, which was held in the summer of 2022.
“Geographically, the Asia-Pacific region is outside the North Atlantic.
The countries and residents of the Asia-Pacific region categorically disagree with everything that is being done or said with the aim of expanding the military bloc to this region or inciting discord and confrontations, ”Wang Wenbin, spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said at the time.
He noted that the NATO bloc "has already undermined stability in Europe" and warned that "it is not worth trying to do the same with the Asia-Pacific region and with the world as a whole."
“However, in recent years, some members of the alliance have been engaged in a show of strength in the Asia-Pacific region and sought to recreate here, in the Asia-Pacific region, a kind of bloc confrontation that is observed in Europe,” Wang Wenbin emphasized.
Globalization of NATO
In a conversation with RT, Vasily Kashin, director of the Center for Comprehensive European and International Studies at the Higher School of Economics, recalled that Beijing has been trying to draw attention to NATO's attempts to expand its scope of activities in the Asia-Pacific region over the past years.
“China has long been talking about attempts to globalize NATO and attempts to create a military bloc in Asia along its lines instead of the system of bilateral alliances that exist there.
China considers this as a serious threat, criticizes and opposes this process at the diplomatic level, ”the expert noted.
The new blocks created in the Asia-Pacific region under the auspices of the United States have not yet become full-fledged analogues of the North Atlantic Alliance, but are the basis for building such structures, Vasily Kashin believes.
“AUKUS and QUAD are the first steps in this direction, but they are not yet analogous to NATO.
AUKUS is not a military alliance with firm military commitments.
QUAD is also not a military bloc, it is a partnership without unequivocal military obligations, and India does not consider it as a military ally.
The goal of the United States is to create a functioning multilateral military alliance in Asia, which will unite all US allies with clear military obligations along the lines of NATO, ”the political scientist explained.
The diplomatic struggle between the US and China will continue, Vasily Kashin is sure.
“China will use its economic tools to prevent such an alliance from forming.
He manages a lot, but it is difficult to predict the outcome of this struggle at the moment.
Of course, there is a danger of forming a pro-American alliance in Asia.
In addition, there is a possibility of a real outbreak of hostilities around Taiwan in the next few years, ”the source of RT believes.
In turn, Director General of the Center for Political Information Alexei Mukhin noted that NATO is trying to "globalize" its activities in those areas that are of interest to the United States, in particular in the Asia-Pacific region.
“Because of the intentions of the United States and NATO to contain China, the conflict potential in the Asia-Pacific region continues to grow.
A scenario of a series of local conflicts can be implemented, which subsequently spill over into military provocations against the PRC.
It is hoped that China adequately assesses this threat, ”concluded the political scientist.