Canberra — The “warning” action of the Chinese administration is inconsistent with its rhetoric about promoting peace and prosperity in the region, Australia’s defense minister said on Friday that Chinese naval vessels sailed the country’s exclusive economic zone. Said after being tracked down.
Defense Minister Peter Dutton cites the militarization of the South China Sea by the Chinese Communist Party administration, the recent invasion of Taiwan, and the introduction of the National Security Act in Hong Kong as examples of Chinese administration’s actions conflicting with its rhetoric. rice field.
“We are all familiar with the frequent claims that the Chinese government is committed to peace, cooperation and development,” Dutton said in a speech in Canberra.
“Nevertheless, we are witnessing a serious disconnect between words and actions. We are watching very carefully as the Chinese government is working on increasingly vigilant activities.”
The relationship between Australia and its largest export market reached its lowest in 2020, when Canberra supported the United Nations investigation into the origin of COVID-19, which was first recorded in China.
The Chinese administration has cut off contact with the minister and responded by imposing high tariffs on Australian wine, barley, beef, coal and seafood exports, effectively invalidating the 2015 free trade agreement. .. Australia and its ally, the United States, have dubbed the move “economic coercion.”
The latest thorn exchange took place in August when Australia confirmed that it was monitoring a Chinese intelligence vessel sailing within Australia’s exclusive economic zone, but not in Australian waters. I did.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the vessel, the second type that had been monitored for several months along the Australian coast, was legally navigating.
“But don’t think for a moment that we weren’t watching them because they were trying to watch us,” Morrison told reporters in Adelaide.
“It shows that no one is now happy with the situation in the Indo-Pacific.”
In September, a new security agreement called AUKUS between Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom was widely seen as an attempt to strengthen the military power of the region in the face of the growing presence of the Chinese government.
The Epoch Times contributed to this report