Americas, Asia - Pacific

China is Pentagon’s top concern, says US defense chief

Mark Esper claims China is becoming growing threat to long-standing rules-based world order

Ayhan Şimşek   | 15.02.2020
China is Pentagon’s top concern, says US defense chief U.S Secretary of Defense Mark Esper makes a speech during the 56th Munich Security Conference at Bayerischer Hof Hotel in Munich, Germany on February 15, 2020. ( Abdulhamid Hoşbaş - Anadolu Agency )

MUNICH 

U.S. Defence Secretary Mark Esper on Saturday claimed that China was becoming a growing threat to the world order.

Esper used Munich Security Conference speech to convince allies and partners about Pentagon’s new defense strategy, which sees China as a strategic threat.

“Pentagon’s top concern is the People’s Republic of China,” Esper told an international audience of political and military leaders, who gathered in Munich for a three-day security conference.

“Under President Xi’s rule, the Chinese Communist Party is heading even faster and further in the wrong direction,” he claimed.

“More internal repression, more predatory economic practices, more heavy-handedness, and most concerning for me, a more aggressive military posture,” he continued.

Esper accused China of carrying out commercial and military expansion, and urged Washington’s allies to take a stance against Beijing’s policies.

"It is essential that we, as an international community, wake up to the challenges presented by China's manipulation of the long-standing international, rules-based order, that is benefited all of us for many decades,” he asserted.

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