US Defense Secretary Warns China Against Aggression in the Pacific, Urges Dialogue

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United States Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin warned Washington would not accept “bullying or coercion” in the Pacific during remarks on China at a key security summit in Singapore on Saturday, June 3.

Speaking at the IISS Shangri-La Dialogue, Austin accused China of conducting “an alarming number of risky intercepts of US and allied aircraft flying lawfully in international airspace.”

“To be clear, we do not seek conflict or confrontation,” he said. “But we will not flinch in the face of bullying or coercion.”

Austin also highlighted Taiwan, saying Washington was opposed to any “unilateral” changes to the island’s status, and calling for better dialogue between US and Chinese military leadership.

“I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: great powers must be beacons of transparency and responsibility. And the United States is deeply committed to doing our part,” he said. Credit: United States Department of Defense via Storyful