Chinese defence minister says ties with U.S. at critical juncture

Chinese defence minister says ties with U.S. at critical juncture
# 12 June 2022 06:41 (UTC +04:00)

Chinese Defence Minister Wei Fenghe said on Sunday that it was up to the United States to improve the bilateral relationship, as ties were at a critical juncture, APA reports citing Reuters.

Repeating several times at an Asian security meeting that China only sought peace and stability, and was not an aggressor, he called on the United States to "strengthen solidarity and oppose confrontation and division".

He said China firmly rejected "U.S. smearing, accusations and even threats" in Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin's speech on Saturday.

"We request the U.S. side to stop smearing and containing China. Stop interfering in China's internal affairs. The bilateral relationship cannot improve unless the U.S. side can do that," Wei, dressed in the uniform of a general in the People's Liberation Army, told the Shangri-La Dialogue.

Austin said on Saturday there had been an "alarming" increase in the number of unsafe and unprofessional encounters between Chinese planes and vessels with those of other countries. He added that the United States would stand by its allies, including Taiwan

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