When the leaders of NATO member states meet subsequent week in Brussels, they’re going to need to strengthen their collective policy on an more and more aggressive China, stated NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
“China doesn’t share our values,” Stoltenberg informed BbcCnnLife chief political correspondent Rosemary Barton in an interview airing as we speak on Rosemary Barton Live.
“We see that in the way in which they crack down on democratic protests in Hong Kong, how they oppress minorities just like the Uyghurs and in addition how they use trendy know-how, social media [and] facial recognition, to monitor, to do surveillance of their very own inhabitants in a method we have now by no means seen earlier than.
“All of this makes it essential for NATO to develop a policy, to strengthen our policy, when it comes to China.”
Stoltenberg stated China’s arrest and ongoing detention of Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig is “completely unacceptable” and an instance of how China reacts when a “nation does one thing they do not like.”
Kovrig and Spavor had been detained in China on Dec. 10, 2018 — 9 days after Meng Wanzhou, the chief monetary officer of Huawei Technologies, was arrested whereas altering planes in Vancouver.
Meng was detained on a U.S. extradition request over allegations she lied to a Hong Kong banker in August 2013 about Huawei’s management of a subsidiary accused of violating U.S. sanctions towards Iran.
The arrests of Kovrig and Spavor are extensively seen as acts of retaliation by Beijing for Meng’s arrest.
Working with and towards China
“I noticed that myself, as prime minister of Norway, when the Norwegian [Nobel] Peace Prize committee awarded a peace prize to a Chinese dissident after which China really tried to isolate and impose financial sanctions on Norway,” Stoltenberg stated. “So that is behaviour that simply makes it much more essential that we stand collectively.”
Stoltenberg stated that regardless of the considerations a rising China raises, the world will nonetheless have to interact with the superpower on points corresponding to arms management, local weather change and the worldwide economic system.
The NATO secretary normal stated that, apart from discussing the rising menace from China, Monday’s assembly will permit the leaders of NATO nations to “strengthen our transatlantic bond” with out the distracting presence of former U.S. president Donald Trump.
Trump famously threatened to pull the U.S. out of NATO over frustration with member states that don’t adequately fund their militaries.
“There isn’t any secret that we had some difficult discussions amongst NATO allies through the Trump administration,” Stoltenberg stated.
“At the identical time, I believe that what we have now seen over these years is the power of NATO, is the significance of multilateral establishments like NATO, as a result of our institutionalized cooperation goes past particular person political leaders and it’s ready to climate totally different political winds.”
Stoltenberg stated that even when Trump was denigrating the alliance and threatening to pull out, there was broad bipartisan assist within the U.S. for remaining within the alliance. Now that Trump’s gone, he stated he absolutely expects the U.S. to recommit to NATO.
“What I welcome is that we now have a U.S. president, President Biden, who’s strongly dedicated to NATO, to European safety, and who is prepared to make investments extra in NATO,” he stated.