BEIJING (AP) — China launched a scathing attack on the United States and NATO on Wednesday, days before a meeting between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
The comments by Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian underscore the increasingly contentious relationship, along with China’s increasingly confrontational approach to foreign relations, which hotly rejects criticism.
A last week’s NATO summit in Spain, Blinken accused China of “seeking to undermine the rules-based international order.”
In his remarks on Wednesday, Zhao said that “the so-called rules-based international order is actually a family rule created by a handful of countries to serve the interests of the United States.”
Washington “observes international rules only when it sees fit,” he said, adding that NATO “must give up its blind faith in military might.”
Relations between the United States and China are dominated by disputes over trade issues and human rights a Taiwan and the one in Beijing territorial claims in the South China Sea.
China, meanwhile, has refused to condemn Russia’s four-month war against Ukraine, criticized sanctions imposed on Moscow by NATO members and accused Washington and its allies of provoking the conflict.
Russia and China have strengthened political, economic and military ties, while aligning their foreign policies to oppose the influence of liberal democracies. Weeks before the Russian invasion in February, Chinese leader Xi Jinping received his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, at a meeting in which they promised a “limitless” partnership.
At its summit, NATO for the first time singled out China as one of its strategic priorities for the coming decade.
“China is substantially increasing its military forces, including nuclear weapons, intimidating its neighbors, threatening Taiwan… monitoring and controlling its own citizens through advanced technology, and spreading Russian lies and disinformation,” Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said afterward. to present the 10-year Strategic Concept.
In his remarks at Wednesday’s daily briefing, Zhao said the United States “has been working closely with NATO to boost competition with China and stoke group confrontation.”
“NATO’s history is one of creating conflicts and waging wars… arbitrarily launching wars and killing innocent civilians, even to this day,” Zhao said. “The facts have shown that it is not China that poses a systemic challenge to NATO, but rather it is NATO that poses an imminent systemic challenge to world peace and security.”
Blinken is expected to meet Wang on Saturday at a meeting of foreign ministers of the Group of 20 major wealthy and developing nations on the Indonesian island of Bali.
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