In Solomon Islands, US warns against any Chinese military "installation"

In Solomon Islands, US warns against any Chinese military “installation”

United States of America Solomon Islands has warned that it will respond “accordingly” if China A “permanent military presence” was to be established in the Pacific archipelago after the signing of a controversial security agreement, the White House said Friday.

A high-level US delegation that visited the Solomon Islands made clear to the island’s leaders that if Beijing The US presidency said in a press statement that it should move towards “establishing a de facto permanent military presence”, as this would cause “serious concerns” for the United States, which would “respond on this basis.” She added that this also applies in the case of the establishment of any “military installation” or “display of force capabilities” that would allow a Chinese deployment in the region.

‘No military base, no long-term presence’

Envoys from the White House and the US State Department traveled to the Solomon Islands on Friday, where they met Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavari. While Washington wanted to persuade the archipelago not to sign an agreement with Beijing, they appeared surprised on Tuesday by formalizing this rapprochement.

“In response to the concerns raised, Prime Minister Sogavari reiterated his assurances which specifically included no military base, no long-term presence, no force projection capabilities,” the presidency explained. The United States confirmed that it would follow developments closely in consultation with its regional partners. »

The US delegation also insisted on the “potential repercussions for regional security,” objecting during the “substantive discussions” to the “purpose, scope and transparency of the agreement.”

Security Dialogue

But the Americans also emphasized “respect for the right” of the Solomon Islands to make their “sovereign decisions”, and tried to co-opt the islands by multiplying gestures towards them. Among them, speeding up the opening of a US embassy, ​​strengthening cooperation on unexploded mines, sending a hospital ship to aid public health or delivering additional vaccines.

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The two countries also pledged to launch a “high-level strategic dialogue” that will focus in particular on the sensitive issue of security.

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