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Military

Russia, China Concerned by US Attempt to Increase Influence in Asia-Pacific

Sputnik News

16:12 18.11.2014(updated 18:43 18.11.2014)

Washington's plans to boost US influence in the Asia-Pacific region did not find support in Moscow and Beijing. Russia and China scheduled joint naval exercises for 2015.

BEIJING, November 18 (Sputnik) – Russia and China are concerned by the US determination to strengthen its influence in the Asia-Pacific region, the Russian defense minister said Tuesday after talks with his Chinese counterpart.

Senior US officials earlier said the Asia-Pacific region will become the top priority of the country's foreign policy.

"We have also expressed concern about the US attempts to strengthen its military and political influence in the Asia-Pacific region," Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said after talks with his Chinese counterpart Chang Wanquan.

According to Shoigu, Russia-China military relations will be further enhanced with a view to form a collective regional security system. The parties discussed the response to the common threats in the region and particularly agreed on common steps in countering international terrorism.

At the most recent summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Beijing US President Barack Obama promoted the idea of an ambitious 12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership. Its terms have not been fully revealed, however it is believed intent is to curb the further economic expansion of China, as well as increase US influence in the region.

Earlier this month, Russian President Vladimir Putin labeled the Trans-Pacific Partnership as another attempt by the US to build the architecture of regional economic cooperation that benefits the United States.

Russia, China Plan Joint Exercises in Pacific, Mediterranean Next Year

Russia and China decided to hold joint naval exercises in the Mediterranean Sea and the Pacific Ocean next year, Sergei Shoigu added.

'We plan to hold another joint naval exercise next spring in the Mediterranean Sea. A joint exercise is also planned in the Pacific Ocean," the Russian defense minister said following talks with Chang Wanquan.

'Our military cooperation has great potential and the Russian side is ready to develop it in a wide range of directions,' Shoigu added.

The Russian defense minister recalled that in May Russia and China successfully participated in joint Naval Interaction 2014 exercises, when a squadron of warships from Russia's Pacific Fleet sailed into the East China Sea to perform various training and defense scenarios.

Shoigu also mentioned the Tank Biathlon World Championship and Aviadarts Flight Skills Competition, where Chinese crews were participating, as a 'good format for exchanging experience.'

In recent years, Russia and China have enjoyed close cooperation in multiple spheres, including military issues. Russia has supplied China with weapons and hardware, such as Su-27 fighter jets, air defense systems and air defense missiles.

Russian and Chinese ground forces are taking part in annual military drills to prepare cooperative responses in case of destabilization in Central Asia.

Sputnik



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