US navy accuses China of skipping meeting, but Beijing says Washington’s blame game reveals its ‘bullying style’

The US military has accused China of not honoring its agreements after failing to participate in virtual senior-level meetings on maritime safety this week, but China’s navy claimed responsibility rests with the US.

China’s military had been due to participate in meetings scheduled for December 14 to 16, slated to be held virtually due to the coronavirus pandemic and related to the Military Maritime Consultative Agreement.

But Admiral Phil Davidson, head of the US Indo-Pacific Command, on Wednesday accused China of being a no-show, adding that this “should serve as a reminder to all nations as they pursue agreements with China going forward.”

Meanwhile, China’s navy said Beijing had provided the US side with suggestions for the meeting on November 18.

“However, the United States insisted on pushing its unilateral agenda,” said Naval Colonel Liu Wensheng of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy. The US “arbitrarily” shortened and changed the nature of the meeting, “even attempting to force China to participate in the meeting before the two sides reached an agreement on the topics,” Liu explained.

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Beijing attaches great importance to Sino-US maritime military security consultations, Liu said, but urged the US to rethink the reason China didn’t appear at this specific meeting.

“These unprofessional, unfriendly and unconstructive approaches have showed the bullying style of the US,” Liu stressed, adding that he hoped the two states could agree “as soon as possible on relevant matters, to push the opening of the meeting smoothly.”

Davidson also called on the PLA to continue an operational safety dialogue.

The latest exchange of accusations came amid deteriorated ties between the two countries over Beijing’s territorial claims in the South China Sea and its handling of the coronavirus outbreak and policies in Hong Kong, as well as US arms sales to Taiwan and rows over Washington’s stance on Chinese tech firms operating in the US.

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Source:RT World News

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