Russia says West readying for years of confrontation in Asia

AFP , Tuesday 14 Mar 2023

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov accused the West on Tuesday of fomenting "years of confrontation" in the Asia-Pacific region after the AUKUS alliance agreed a nuclear-powered submarines deal.

File photo: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attends a joint press conference with his Saudi Arabia s counterpart following their talks in Moscow on March 9, 2023. AFP


"The Anglo-Saxon world, with the creation of structures like AUKUS and with the advancement of NATO military infrastructures into Asia, is making a serious bet on many years of confrontation" in the region, Lavrov said in televised comments.

In the same vein, China warned Australia, Britain and the United States early Tuesday that they were treading a "path of error and danger" after they unveiled a nuclear-powered submarines deal.

The warning comes after Australia announced on Monday it would buy up to five US nuclear-powered submarines, then build a new model with US and British technology under an ambitious plan to bulk up Western muscle across the Asia-Pacific in the face of a rising China.

US President Joe Biden has stressed that Australia, which joined the alliance with Washington and London known as AUKUS 18 months ago, will not be getting nuclear weapons.

However, acquiring submarines powered by nuclear reactors puts Australia in an elite club and at the forefront of US-led efforts to push back against Chinese military expansion.

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