Commander of United States Pacific Command (USPACOM) Admiral Harry B. Harris Jr. told the Halifax International Security Forum, November 21 in Nova Scotia, Canada that as China’s economy has grown, its ambitions have grown too.
“As China’s economy has grown, so too have its ambitions. But how China behaves will be the true test of its commitment to peace and security. That’s why nations across the region are watching China’s actions and why the Halifax Forum is devoting time to discuss this important issue,” the American commander said.
Admiral Harris added that China’s military ambitions are also growing commensurate with its economy.
“So to avoid potential miscalculations, the United States has worked closely with China to enact confidence building measures focused on the notification of major military activities while ensuring our air and maritime encounters are safe and professional,” he said.
However, he issued a warning to China. “We will not give China – or any nation – a free pass to fray the rules-based security architecture that has benefited all of us,” Harris said.
He noted that most countries in Indo-Asia-Pacific region, especially China, have benefited in the long-established international system of laws and norms to their economic growth and national security.
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