Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Monday warned the US against trying to create a NATO-style military alliance in the Asia Pacific.
Wang made the comments when discussing Washington’s recently released Indo-Pacific strategy, which calls for the US to bolster alliances and partnerships in the region to counter China. “The real goal of the US Indo-Pacific strategy is to establish an Indo-Pacific version of NATO,” Wang said at a press conference.
“It seeks to maintain the US-led system of hegemony, undermine the ASEAN-centered regional cooperation architecture, and compromise the overall and long-term interests of countries in the region,” he said.
Wang cited the new AUKUS military pact between the US, Britain, and Australia, and Washington’s military cooperation with other Quad nations as examples of the US building alliances in the region. He said such efforts by the US are done in the name of advancing cooperation but are really “stoking geopolitical rivalry.”
During the Trump administration, US officials openly floated the idea of using the Quad — which includes the US, Japan, India, and Australia — as the foundation for a NATO-style military alliance in Asia. In 2020, the Quad nations held military exercises together for the first time since 2007, and have held more since.
Wang was asked if the current situation with Russia and Ukraine was similar to China’s relationship with Taiwan. He said the issues are not “comparable at all” but warned the US against supporting the growth of “independence” forces in Taiwan.
“Some forces in the US, in a bid to hold back China’s rejuvenation, have condoned and abetted the growth of separatist forces for ‘Taiwan independence’ and tried tochallenge and hollow out the one-China principle,” Wang said.
Wang Yi unplugged:
“Ukraine and Taiwan are two very different issues. Taiwan will eventually ‘return into the embrace of the homeland’.”
“The true purpose of the United States’ new strategy in the Indo-Pacific region is to try to create an Indo-Pacific version of NATO.”
— Pepe Escobar (@RealPepeEscobar) March 7, 2022
“This gravely violates the basic norms of international relations and puts the peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait in serious jeopardy. This would not only push Taiwan into a precarious situation, but also bring unbearable consequences for the US side,” he added.