Rising tensions in the Indo-Pacific region

2023-06-07 19:08:56, Kosova & Bota CNA

Rising tensions in the Indo-Pacific region

South Korea activated its warplanes after Chinese and Russian warplanes entered its air defense zone, south and east of the Korean Peninsula. The incident follows earlier exchanges between US and Chinese forces in the Taiwan Strait and South China Sea. The administration of President Biden says that these frictions are an example of the increasing aggressiveness of the Chinese military. The following material takes a look at the growing tensions between global powers in the Indo-Pacific.

There have been at least two incidents of short-range encounters between Chinese and US ships and aircraft in less than two weeks, including this Chinese warship on Sunday that intercepted a US destroyer in the Taiwan Strait.

The incident coincides with trilateral naval exercises in the South China Sea between the coast guards of the US, Japan and the Philippines.

"The US provoked first, and the Chinese side responded by handling the incident in accordance with relevant laws and regulations," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin.

"Since you have ignored our warning, we will take all necessary measures against you," the Chinese warship warns a Philippine vessel.

Confrontations between Chinese ships and those of other countries, such as the Philippines, have increased in recent years, as has Beijing's military activity in the region.

The US is also adopting a more robust approach, increasing exercises with allies in the region. Beijing considers them provocations, leading to more incidents that could easily escalate into conflict.

"It's part of a new and troubling norm, especially given the fact that there is limited communication between senior US and Chinese defense officials," Zuri Linetsky, a researcher with the Eurasia Group Foundation, told VOA. "

The White House denies it is partly to blame and says it is trying to talk to Beijing.

"We are working hard on this, and the president is confident that the United States and China will be able to return to the spirit of the Bali meeting," said John Kirby, spokesman for the National Security Council.

At the annual Shangri-la Dialogue meeting in Singapore last week, Beijing rejected Washington's request for a face-to-face meeting between Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and his Chinese counterpart Li Shangfu because of sanctions on Mr. Li, which the administration American has not removed them.

Officials are working to reschedule US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's visit to Beijing canceled by Washington after it shot down a Chinese spy balloon in January./ VOA

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