Recently, after a series of diplomatic disputes, the relations between China and the US are becoming more complicated. Last week, during the annual legislative meetings, China’s top leadership accused the US of waging a comprehensive campaign of containment and repression against China, further deteriorating bilateral relations.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said, “The Western countries, led by the US, have tried to control, surround and suppress China from all sides, which has brought unprecedented serious challenges to our country’s development.”
China’s Foreign Minister Qin Gang also warned of a possible conflict between the two countries. In his first press conference as foreign minister, Qin said, “If the United States continues to accelerate down the wrong path without applying the brakes, nothing can stop it from derailing, and this will certainly lead to conflict and confrontation. “
Zhiqun Zhu, professor of international relations at Bucknell University in the US, says that the ongoing tension between China and the US has directly affected the direction of China’s diplomacy. He says these developments have prompted China to try to strengthen ties with traditional allies in the developing world while improving relations with Western democracies such as Australia and Germany.
China in the role of peacemaker?
Xi held summits with the leaders of Iran, Belarus and Turkmenistan, but he also welcomed German Chancellor Olaf Scholtz to Beijing, while French President Emmanuel Macron and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese held summits with him, he told DW. A trip to China is likely at the end of the year. All of this is part of a diplomatic strategy to push back the US-led effort to counter China.”
Especially in the light of the ongoing war in Ukraine, China feels that its external borders will be surrounded by uncertainty and unpredictable factors.
Sari Arho Haveren, a visiting researcher at the University of Helsinki, says that the challenging external environment has forced China to reshape its foreign policy in several areas.
She says, “One of the main reasons behind the restructuring of its foreign policy is that China is trying to move fast to control the international narrative. Also, to provide itself with peaceful global security and balance.” It is presenting itself as a country to build, while it portrays America as an aggressor that provokes other countries instead of trying to stop the conflict.
China successfully brokered an agreement last week to restore relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia. Following the deal, China is now set to play an even bigger role in the Middle East, potentially challenging US dominance in the oil-rich region.
Ukraine and the Global Security Initiative
Una Serenkova, head of the China Studies Center at Riga Stradins University in Latvia, says China seeks to boost its global role and influence by compulsively engaging with any countries that cannot side with the US or the current international system. Have negative thoughts about.
She says, “China is trying to talk to everyone and their approach is more practical than ideological. What China can achieve from these efforts is to send a message to the heads of other countries that China is an important country.” And if he is together, they too can influence global security by being with him.”
In the case of Ukraine, Chinese Foreign Minister Qin recently reiterated that conflict and sanctions will not end the war there. Along with this, he suggested that the process of peace talks should be done as soon as possible.
His remarks came after China released a 12-point statement laying out its stand on the Russia-Ukraine war. But China’s efforts to present itself as a peace ambassador have raised suspicions among some top US officials. does.
In addition, China released a concept paper on the Global Security Initiative (GSI) earlier this month. Chinese state media says that this document has clarified China’s basic concepts and principles regarding global peace and security.
Drew Thompson, a China expert at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, described the GSI and China’s statement on the war in Ukraine as ‘statements of expectations and preferences’ rather than strategy documents.
He says, “It is designed so that Chinese stakeholders can have a better understanding of China’s security and political priorities. How can these comprehensive documents be used to implement and operate China’s way of governance, It has been left to the Chinese authorities to decide.”
Zhu of Bucknell University says that although the GSI concept paper and the 12-point statement on Ukraine have many things in common to promote peace in Ukraine and elsewhere, the problem is that GSI is not practical.
“It reiterates China’s commitments to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, and to take seriously the legitimate concerns of all countries. This is not a plan to act on,” he told DW. “
Russia will remain close
Havern of the University of Helsinki says that in the current geopolitical context of increased competition between China and the US, China will probably maintain closer ties with Russia. Because in this rivalry, China sees Russia as a ‘valuable multilayer partner’ in comparison to the US-led Western bloc.
“China accepts Russia’s role as an influential military and nuclear power, and understands Russia’s security concerns and is sympathetic to its security spheres of interest,” she told DW. Their interests in change are similar. A year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, China and Russia’s ties have only grown closer.”
Sana Hashmi, postdoctoral fellow at the Taiwan-Asia Exchange Foundation in Taipei, says that countries in the Indo-Pacific region can respond to an aggressive and ambitious China and that the region has entered an ‘era of collective initiative’, where efforts are being made to ensure regional security. More and more countries are becoming strong partners for
She says, “The United States is no longer seen as the only country to provide security, and countries like India are increasingly becoming strong partners for security. It is a shared responsibility to take security measures and create an environment of peace and stability.” Is.”
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