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Beijing Denies Remarks on China's Alleged Desire to Build Military Base on Solomon Islands

Sputnik News


BEIJING (Sputnik) - Statements about China's alleged desire to build a permanent military presence on the Solomon Islands under a bilateral security agreement are nothing but disinformation, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said on Monday.

"The claims spread by some people with ulterior motives about the so-called Chinese military base in the Solomon Islands are misinformation," Wang told a briefing.

Last week, Beijing announced that China and the Solomon Islands signed a framework agreement on security cooperation to enhance social stability and long-term tranquility in the Solomon Islands. Over the weekend, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said that the construction of a military base by China in the Solomon Islands will be a "red line" for Canberra and Washington.

In turn, the Unites States raised concerns over a draft China-Solomon Islands security accord, with US State Department spokesman Ned Price pointing to "the broad nature of the security agreement," which may enable China to deploy its military forces in the country. The agreement, he said, could stir up instability in the Solomon Islands and "set a concerning precedent for the wider Pacific Island region."

The US State Department also announced that two high rank US officials, Kurt Campbell and Daniel Kritenbrink, will travel to the Solomon Islands to transmit Washington's concerns over China's rising activity in the region and similar concerns expressed by US allies in the South Pacific, including Australia and New Zealand.

© Sputnik

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