| 19 May 2024, Sunday |

China accuses US of ‘inciting violence’ and ‘instigating confrontation’

After US Secretary of State Antony Blinken asked Beijing to stop ”aggressive actions” in the Indo-Pacific region, China’s foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin has accused the United States of ”inciting violence” and ”instigating confrontation.”
During his first visit to Indonesia as Secretary of State, Blinken on Tuesday touted a US strategy to deepen its Asian treaty alliances.
He offered to boost defence and intelligence work with partners in an Indo-Pacific region increasingly concerned over China’s behaviour.
Blinken said Washington would work with allies and partners to “defend the rules-based order” and countries should have the right to “choose their own path”.
“That’s why there is so much concern from Northeast Asia to Southeast Asia and from the Mekong River to the Pacific Islands about Beijing’s aggressive actions.
“Claiming open seas as their own. Distorting open markets through subsidies to its state-run companies. Denying the exports or revoking deals for countries whose policies it does not agree with.”
“Countries across the region want this behaviour to change — we do too,” he said.
China claims almost the entire South China Sea as its own, despite some overlapping claims with other coastal states and a ruling by an international tribunal that its vast claim had no legal basis.
Beijing has rejected the US stance as interference from an outside power that could threaten Asia’s stability.
Tensions between the United States and China have risen over Taiwan, which China claims as its own and has pledged to recapture one day, by force if necessary.