DThe defense ministers of the United States, Australia and Japan want their military cooperation in the face of growing ambitions of China “We are deeply concerned about China’s increasingly aggressive and threatening behavior in the Taiwan Strait and elsewhere,” US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in a meeting with defense ministers from Australia and Japan at the US Pacific military headquarters in Hawaii.
Australian Defense Minister Richard Marles said China was trying to shape the world around it “in a way we’ve never seen before”.
Washington announced an $810 million aid package for Pacific island nations on Thursday. With this, the US wants to strengthen its diplomatic presence in the region. That same day, Vice President Kamala Harris visited Japan and South Korea, where she said the United States would act without fear or hesitation across Asia, including across the Taiwan Strait.
A few days ago, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken met with the Chinese minister Wang Yi On the sidelines of the UN General Assembly’s general debate on “Peace and Stability” in the Taiwan Strait.
Since the split between China and Taiwan in 1949, Beijing has considered Taiwan a breakaway territory and has claimed the strait between China and the island. Tensions between Beijing and Taipei, and between Beijing and Washington, grew after top diplomat Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan in August. China’s military conducted its largest military maneuvers to date in the waters around the island, shooting down missiles in the process. Taiwan also conducted exercises and took delivery of new fighter jets.
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