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Yes, Russia-Ukraine war is on but China 'most serious long-term challenge', says US

China is the only country with the intent and the resources - economic, diplomatic, military, and technological - to do it, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a major foreign policy speech on China.

Yes Russia-Ukraine war is on but China 'most serious long-term challenge', says US
Washington D.C., First Published May 27, 2022, 5:05 AM IST

Stressing that China poses the most serious long-term challenge to the international order, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Beijing's vision would move us away from the universal values that have sustained so much of the world's progress over the past 75 years. He added that even as (Russian) President (Vladimir) Putin's war continues, we will remain focused on the most serious long-term challenge to the international order, and that's posed by the People's Republic of China, Blinken said without mincing his words.

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China is also integral to the global economy and to our ability to solve challenges from climate to COVID. Put simply, the United States and China have to deal with each other for the foreseeable future. That's why this is one of the most complex and consequential relationships of any that we have in the world today, he said.

The US Secretary of State, however, clarified that the intention is not to block China from its role as a major power nor to stop it, but “we will defend and strengthen the international law agreements, principles, and institutions that maintain peace and security, protect the rights of individuals and sovereign nations”.

And this would make it possible for all countries, including the United States and China, to co-exist and cooperate, he said, according to the Press Trust of India.

Elaborating on China and its powerplay, he said the China of today is very different from the China of 50 years ago. China, during the Nixon years, was isolated and struggling with widespread poverty and hunger. He added that the country today is a global power with extraordinary reach, influence, and ambition, but, Beijing rather than using its power to reinforce and revitalise the international laws, the agreements, the principles that helped its growth was undermining them. Hitting out at President Xi Jinping, Blinken said the ruling Chinese Communist Party has become more repressive at home and more aggressive abroad.

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Beijing, he said, has perfected mass surveillance within China and exported that technology to more than 80 countries. Its advancing unlawful maritime claims in the South China Sea are undermining peace and security, freedom of navigation, and commerce. Adding to it, Blinken said the country was circumventing or breaking trade rules, harming workers and companies not just in the US but also around the world.

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