Incoming Australian PM Albanese to meet US, Japanese, Indian leaders
The incoming Australian leader will hold one-on-one meetings amid regional tensions with China.
The incoming Australian PM, Anthony Albanese, who yesterday won elections against his rival Prime Minister Scott Morrison, said he will hold one-on-one meetings on Tuesday with US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The meetings will take place following joint talks in Tokyo at the "Quad" grouping, amid growing tensions with China.
China accused Australia's Defense Minister of slander and "wild remarks" in late April after his statement, in which he said that Australians should "prepare for war."
“Certain Australian politicians often seek selfish political gains by making wild remarks to smear China and clamor for a war,” Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Tuesday. “Such despicable moves are seen through by the Chinese people and the international community.”
Peter Dutton, Australia's Defense Minister, declared that China is "on a very deliberate course at the moment," and that “we have to stand up with countries to stare down any act of aggression ... to make sure we can keep peace in our region and for our country.”
Dutton spoke to Australian Channel Nine, telling the Today Show that “the only way you can preserve peace is to prepare for war and be strong as a country. Not to cower, not to be on a bended knee and be weak. That’s the reality.”
With the nuclear-charged AUKUS pact whose aim is to target China, a rift arises between Australia and China over the Solomon Islands, which recently signed a security agreement with Beijing.
Reports by The Financial Times citing officials say that China is to hold negotiations on potential security deals with Kiribati and possibly Vanuatu.
An intelligence official from a US ally said, "They are in talks with Kiribati and at least one more Pacific island country over an agreement that would cover much of the same ground as that with the Solomon Islands."