China warns neighbors against repeat of ‘Ukraine tragedy’

Foreign Minister Wang Yi said in a recent video address at a think-tank conference hosted by the Foreign Policy Community of Indonesia in Jakarta that the Southeast Asian states must refrain from following in the footsteps of Ukraine and should not allow themselves to be used by “external forces.”
“The crisis in Ukraine has sounded the alarm for mankind, and similar tragedies must not be staged in Asia,” the top Chinese diplomat said. “We must promote regional security through dialogue and cooperation and oppose seeking absolute security at the expense of other countries.”
Wang warned of a “backstage manipulator,” apparently referring to the United States, which is fanning the flames of controversy over the South China Sea territorial dispute. “This black hand hiding behind the scenes must be exposed.”
“China is always willing to work with relevant countries to properly resolve differences through dialogue and seek effective ways to control the maritime situation.”
The Pentagon has sought to forge closer military ties with those countries in the region that have territorial disputes with China.
The Philippines, for instance, agreed earlier this year to allow US forces to use four additional bases in the country. Beijing warned that Manila was binding itself to a “chariot of geopolitical strife.”
China and its neighbors must work together to safeguard the “hard-won peace” in the region by properly managing differences, Wang said.
The Chinese diplomat predicted that foreign efforts to spur conflict in the South China Sea won’t succeed.
“We should abandon the Cold War mentality and oppose zero-sum games, keeping the region away from geopolitical calculations, and not become pawns in the great power competition,” Wang said.
Relations between China and the United States have deteriorated in recent years amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict and rising tensions over Washington’s constant meddling in Taiwan.
Beijing has repeatedly accused Washington of various military provocations in the South China Sea, Taiwan Strait, and elsewhere across the region.

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