July 03, 2015

"We should make clear to all parties that we will work to defend freedom of navigation and freedom of flights and that parties should resolve disputes in a way that avoids confrontation."

The Australian Former senior US official and past World Bank president Bob Zoellick has warned Australians that opinion in America is hardening against China and that any moves by China to an “Asian ­hegemony” strategy will plague the region and China itself. by Paul Kelly

'During his visit to Australia to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the Australia-America Free Trade Agreement, Zoellick’s message is that the US can and must remain the insurer of Asia-Pacific security, in partnership with its allies, including Australia.

'But Zoellick argues the central challenge for the US and Australia is to operate successfully in a “hybrid system” — seizing the economic potential in partnering with China while, on the security front, taking a firm stand against China’s assertiveness.

'This strategy plays out against growing alarm in Washington that China now flexes its muscles by seeking, in the words of President Xi Jinping, to build “a new type of international system” — a far reaching departure from former leader Deng Xiaoping’s maxim “hide your strength, bide your time”.'

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