Australian PM visits Solomon Islands in the Pacific in view of the rising Chinese influence; announces financial aid of $250 million

Third World WarCanberra: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison started his visit to the Solomon Islands with precise words ‘The Solomon Islands is the closest member in the Australian family in the Pacific. To increase the influence in the Pacific, it is necessary to show your presence. Therefore, my first official foreign visit after the elections is to the Australian neighbours and I am very satisfied with it. Australia is always ready and enthusiastic to bring about a change in this region.’

The re-election of the liberal party leader Scott Morrison, in the Australian elections, is considered to be a major jolt for China. Morrison, in his first term itself, had taken bold decisions against China and had issued a clear warning that the Chinese interference in Australia as well as in the Pacific region will not be tolerated. Even during the election campaign, he created a sensation referring to China asa ‘Customer’.The disregard shown by the Australian leadership, despite China being the largest trading partner of Australia did not go down well with China.

solomon islands, scott morrison, chinaThereafter, China issued warnings to Australia regarding the cooperation in the trade, investment and other sectors. But Morrison, who became the Prime Minister successively for the second time has does not pay any heed to the Chinese threat, which is evident from his first foreign visit. China had used forced financial aid to increase its influence in the Asia-Pacific region. China had started frantic efforts to turn the smaller countries in the region,on its side, using financial aid as a tool.

But countries like Australia, the United States, Japan and New Zealand started retaliating, objecting strongly to the Chinese activities. Japan and New Zealand checked China announcing various schemes and even financial assistance for the countries in the Pacific region. At the same time, Australia openly challenged the Chinese expansion plans announcing a policy like ‘Step Up Pacific’. The selection of a country like the Solomon Islands, by Morrison, for his first visit after re-election, is also a part of the same policy.

Morrison who reached the Solomon Islands on Sunday, met Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare, on Monday. Morrison announced a financial aid of $250 million, over the next decade, for the Solomon Islands. This assistance is being given to the Solomon Islands for development of infrastructural facilities and provides an impetus to sports and employment creation.

Three Chinese warships enter Sydney port in Australia

Sydney: At a time when the Australian Prime Minister is on a visit to a Pacific country, defying the Chinese influence, three Chinese warships have entered the Sydney port. These include an advanced destroyer along with two other warships. The four days stay of these warships with a deployment of 700 sailors and soldiers, along with the Chinese ‘Marines’ unit has created a stir. The media has claimed that the local population was not informed about the arrival of these warships.

solomon islands, scott morrison, chinaLast month, an incident of Chinese destroyers dangerously chasing an Australian warship, in the South China Sea, had been reported. A shocking claim of a laser attack on an Australian helicopter and its pilot during the chase also was made. Incidents of tension arising between the Chinese and Australian warships in the South China Sea and Pacific regions have also been reported. Against this background, this docking of Chinese warships directly in the Sydney port is very significant.

Prime Minister Morrison tried to diffuse the matter, saying that there is no need to make a big issue regarding the visit of the Chinese warships. The Australian Prime Minister clarified that the Australian agencies had the information about the visit of the Chinese warships.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.