Diplomatic Briefing

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Newsline: Asia Seeks to Stay Out of US-China Diplomatic Crossfire

Asian defense chiefs urged efforts to protect the borders of smaller nations in the wake of the Ukraine war, while balking at joining in on the broader US-China tussle. Ministers of smaller nations such as Fiji and Singapore warned against framing the crisis as part of an ideological contest between autocracies and democracies as the IISS Shangri-La Dialogue wrapped up in Singapore. Earlier Sunday, Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe hit back at the US’s Indo-Pacific strategy, which he blamed for pushing the two sides toward confrontation. (https://finance.yahoo.com/news/shangri-la-latest-us-china-051641827.html) Both the US and China are using Asia’s biggest annual security conference to drum up support for their competing visions for regional stability, even as Ukraine consumes Washington’s attention and Beijing struggles with economic pressures at home.

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