Beijing slams ‘dangerous’ NATO claims
NATO’s claims that cooperation between Beijing and Moscow in the Arctic represents a "challenge" signals that the alliance is still dwelling in the Cold War, Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said on Wednesday.
“NATO falsely claimed that China-Russia cooperation poses a challenge to NATO’s values and interests, which once again exposed NATO’s attempt to export Cold War mentality,” he told reporters during a regular press briefing, adding that NATO should “discard this dangerous thinking” because it could destabilize the entire world.
The spokesman went on to stress that China “respects the sovereignty” and jurisdiction of the Arctic states in this region and has cooperated with various countries to promote regional development.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg last week signaled that the bloc was poised to ramp up its military presence in the Arctic, arguing that Russia and China pose a “strategic challenge.” Global warming is unlocking ample opportunities for shipping and natural resource extraction in the region, a reality that could be exploited by “authoritarian regimes” like Russia and China, according to Stoltenberg.
Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov scoffed at the NATO head’s remarks, stressing Moscow’s cooperation with China in the Arctic poses no threat to any other country and is meant exclusively for development.