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SINGAPORE — China’s protection minister accused the U.S. of “smearing” Beijing and mentioned Washington is attempting to “hijack” international locations within the Indo-Pacific area.

Wei Fenghe, talking on the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, mentioned the burden of bettering the troubled U.S.-China ties lies on Washington.

“We request the U.S. aspect to cease smearing and containing China. Cease interfering in China’s inside affairs. The bilateral relationship can’t enhance except the U.S. aspect can try this,” he advised delegates on the dialogue, Asia’s high protection convention.

“Nevertheless, in order for you confrontation, we are going to struggle to the tip. The 2 militaries ought to make optimistic efforts for a optimistic relationship,” Wei added.

Wei mentioned U.S. President Joe Biden’s new Indo-Pacific technique results in “battle and confrontation.”

The U.S. introduced its Indo-Pacific Financial Framework, or IPEF, in Might as a part of its technique for the area.  The IPEF entails 13 international locations and excludes China.

“To us, the technique is an try to construct an unique small group within the identify of a free and open Indo-Pacific, to hijack international locations in our area and goal one particular nation,” Wei mentioned on the concluding day of the three-day dialogue in Singapore.

“It’s a technique to create battle and confrontation to comprise and encircle others,” he mentioned. “China seeks peace and stability, and isn’t an aggressor within the Indo-Pacific,” he mentioned, calling on the U.S. to “strengthen solidarity and oppose confrontation and division.” 

Throughout the summit, which has seen addresses by Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. protection secretary Lloyd Austin, China has been pushing again towards narratives of Chinese language aggression within the Indo-Pacific. 

Senior serving and retired Chinese language army officers have held particular media briefings to counter the speeches by each Kishida and Austin.

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Talking on Saturday, Austin had described the Indo-Pacific as a “precedence theater of operations” that lay on the “coronary heart of American grand technique.”  He referred to as the Indo-Pacific technique launched in February central to the Biden Administration’s forthcoming Nationwide Safety Technique and to his personal division’s Nationwide Protection Technique.

Austin sharply criticized Beijing’s more and more “coercive and aggressive” method to its claims within the Indo-Pacific — the place China is concerned in territorial disputes with a number of neighbors together with Japan, India, the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia.

Warning on Taiwan

On Sunday, Wei additionally issued a terse warning on Taiwan, which China regards as a breakaway province that’s to be reunified with the mainland, by power as a final resort. China will struggle any makes an attempt by Taiwan to declare independence to the “final man,” he mentioned.  

“We are going to struggle in any respect prices and we are going to struggle to the very finish. That is the one selection for China,” he mentioned.  “Those that pursue Taiwanese independence in an try to separate China will certainly come to no good finish.” 

“It’s China’s Taiwan, a province of China. We are going to notice the reunification of Taiwan,” Wei mentioned.

His speech got here a day after U.S. Protection Secretary Austin accused China of “provocative, destabilizing” army exercise near the island.

The U.S. is obliged  to supply the self-ruled island with the weapons and companies to defend itself underneath its Taiwan Relations Act.

Austin had asserted that it was China which was elevating the stakes. 

“We see rising coercion from Beijing. We have witnessed a gentle improve in provocative and destabilizing army exercise close to Taiwan. And that features [People’s Liberation Army] plane flying close to Taiwan in report numbers in latest months — and almost each day,” he mentioned.

China’s Wei additionally referred to as for talks between NATO and Russia to finish the Ukraine warfare. He mentioned China didn’t have a pact with Russia.

“It’s a partnership, not an alliance. Relations with Russia will proceed to develop. We’ve got not offered any army or materials assist to Russia” for its Ukraine warfare, Wei mentioned.

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