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Saturday, October 16, 2021

NATO expresses concern over Beijing’s ‘forced policy, expansion of nuclear program’

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has called on the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to be transparent about its expanded nuclear weapons program during a meeting with State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

The Stoltenberg office announced in a statement that on September 2, the NATO Secretary General and the PRC Foreign Minister were engaged in a virtual meeting where they discussed NATO-China relations and current international security challenges.

Although Stoltenberg made it clear that NATO does not see the PRC as an adversary, he called on Beijing to live up to its international obligations and act responsibly.

Stoltenberg also expressed NATO’s concerns about Beijing’s coercive policy – which NATO had previously expressed after meeting with leaders for a one-day summit in Brussels in June – as well as the PRC’s lack of transparency in its military modernization.

He also expressed concern about the nuclear expansion of the PRC, which has attracted the attention of the United States and the international community this year.

The Washington Post and the Federation of American Scientists, an American think tank, reported on June 30 and July 26 that the PRC was building hundreds of nuclear intercontinental ballistic missile silos in the desert areas of Gansu Province and near Hami City in eastern Xinjiang.

The PRC has also launched its Long March 1 strategic nuclear submarine this year, which is said to be equipped with the Julang-3 ballistic missile with a range of more than 200 miles (10,000 kilometers). Military experts from the Communist Party of China (CCP) have described Long March 1 as a qualitative leap to sea-based nuclear power.

Numerous officials have warned of Beijing’s growing nuclear and military capabilities, with former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo writing an article earlier this year entitled “Why China’s West Should Be Concerned about China’s Nuclear Build-Up,” claiming that the And its nuclear arsenal has now become a threat to neighboring countries.

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At Monday’s meeting, the NATO secretary-general called on Beijing to “engage in meaningful dialogue, confidence-building and transparency measures on its nuclear capabilities and doctrine,” and stressed that it would be good for both NATO and the PRC.

According to China’s state-run news agency Global Times, Foreign Minister Wang Yi accused NATO member states of frequently deploying aircraft in the Asia-Pacific region and said “the region does not welcome military forces, major power struggles or instigators of the Cold War.”

Wang said NATO should adhere to its core geographical position and play a constructive role in the peaceful and stable development of the region.

During Monday’s meeting, the Secretary-General and the Foreign Minister also discussed Afghanistan’s development, with Stoltenberg calling for an integrated international approach to ensuring that the Taliban are accountable for their actions and commitments to counter terrorism, as well as women’s rights.

According to the press release, Stoltenberg stressed that NATO allies have entered Afghanistan to ensure that the country will no longer act as a platform for terrorists and reminded that no terrorist attack has been organized against our country from Afghanistan since 2001.

Wang said he contributed to this report.

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Katabella Roberts is currently a Turkish-based reporter. He covers news and business for The Epoch Times, primarily centered on the United States.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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