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Quad discusses recent Chinese adventurism, asks states to not exacerbate long-standing disputes

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India News: The second meeting of the Quad (Australia-India-Japan-US) foreign ministers in Tokyo saw them reaffirming their “collective vision” of maintaining a f

NEW DELHI: The second meeting of the Quad (Australia-India-Japan-US) foreign ministers in Tokyo saw them reaffirming their “collective vision” of maintaining a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific in the face of growing Chinese assertiveness . Significantly, as foreign minister S Jaishankar said, Quad underscored respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty.The Australian government said Quad emphasised it was vital for states to ease tensions and not exacerbate long-standing disputes during a pandemic. The Quad also discussed developments in South China Sea and, according to Australia, also said states cannot assert maritime claims inconsistent with international law, particularly UNCLOS.US secretary of state Mike Pompeo called for collaboration against Chinese Communist Party’s “exploitation, corruption, and coercion” as witnessed, among other places, in “the Himalayas”. Jaishankar was more discreet in his remarks as he stated that the objective was to advance the security and the economic interests of all countries having legitimate and vital interests in the region.While citing examples of Chinese adventurism, Pompeo also brought up the situation in the South China Sea, East China Sea, the Mekong and the Taiwan Straits, apart from mentioning the Himalayas as he alluded to the India-China LAC standoff. Japanese foreign minister Toshimitsu Motegi confirmed in a statement later that the ministers exchanged views on the situation in South China Sea where China is accused of using military power to intimidate other claimants of disputed waters.”We remain committed to upholding the rules-based international order, underpinned by the rule of law, transparency, freedom of navigation in the international seas, respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty and peaceful resolution of disputes,” said Jaishankar in his opening remarks.According to the Indian readout, Jaishankar, Pompeo, Motegi and their Australian counterpart Marise Payne exchanged views about regional issues of…

Sachin Parashar

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