US: Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop stated that they will continue to oppose the construction of artificial reefs and militarization of those structures in the South China Sea.
Bishop went on to say: “We continue to oppose the construction of artificial reefs and militarization of those structures in the South China Sea.”
The minister, who was delivering a lecture in New Delhi, said at the same time that there was a need to engage with Beijing as it would be in no one’s interest to see the Chinese economy falter.
“Rising nationalism is leading to a narrow definition of national interest and a more transactional approach in negotiations. These factors reduce the prospects of multilateral cooperation in collective interest,” said Bishop, who is on a two-day visit to New Delhi.
China has constructed artificial reefs in the resource- rich South China and has been ramping up military infrastructure there despite stiff opposition from countries including Indonesia, Vietnam and Philippines, which are involved in the territorial dispute.