Tensions between the UK and China escalated after British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss warned China to play by international rules or be ready to face action by the G7 group of leading global powers acting as “an economic NATO”.
“Countries must play by the rules. And that includes China,” Truss said in a speech at Mansion House in London. “They will not continue to rise if they do not play by the rules. China needs trade with the G7. We (the Group of Seven) represent around half of the global economy. And we have choices,” she said in her speech at Mansion House, London, Global Times reported.
Responding to the statement and Truss, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Wang Wenbin said, “International rules should be the norms governing international relations based on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, rather than the rules of a small circle or clique.”
The UK foreign secretary warned that China could face sanctions like Russia from an “assertive” G7 if it threatens others’ security, adding: “They (Russia, China) will not continue to rise if they do not play by the rules,’ Global Times reported.
Liz Truss also criticised China for not condemning Russia over the Ukraine conflict.
“NATO has long adhered to the old concept of security, engaged in the confrontation between factions and become a tool for individual countries to seek hegemony,” Wang further stated, calling out NATO as a product of the Cold War.
Blaming the organization, he also said that NATO claims to be a defensive organization, but in fact, it is constantly creating confrontations and disturbances.
Although Beijing has extended firm diplomatic support to Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, it appears unwilling to back Moscow in a whole-hearted manner to avert Western sanctions due to the fear of secondary sanctions.
China’s support to Russia in opposition to the enlargement of NATO has given rise to concerns in the Eastern and Central European countries about the reliability of the Asian giant as a partner which can be counted on.
Wang Wenbin called China’s position on the Ukraine issue consistent and clear.
Underlining the importance of the Indo-Pacific region, British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has also emphasised earlier the role of NATO and that the UK and its partner countries need to pre-empt threats in the region to ensure that democracies like Taiwan are able to defend themselves.
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