October 3, 2023

BEIJING (AP) — China’s navy has dispatched a pair of navy ships to participate in joint drills with Singapore’s navy and take part a regional maritime safety exhibition.

The workouts beginning Friday within the Southeast Asian metropolis state come amid China’s rising presence within the South China Sea, which it claims sovereignty over nearly in its entirety.

Considerations are particularly pronounced within the U.S., which on Wednesday joined with forces from the Philippines in main workouts in Philippine waters dealing with the South China Sea which can be more likely to anger China. Beijing’s extra assertive stance comes as its relations with the U.S. and its allies have hit historic lows.

State tv’s navy channel recognized the ships being despatched because the guided missile frigate Yulin and the minesweeper hunter Chibi. They may also be current for the Might 3-5 IMDEX Asia Nationwide Protection and Maritime Safety Present, which is able to function 25 warships and attendees from 62 nations.

Amid China’s efforts to make inroads with nations which have historically leaned towards the U.S., Singapore has sought a stability between rivals Washington and Beijing, however stays formally unallied amid a wrestle for navy and financial affect.

China additionally formally eschews navy alliances, however has held an growing variety of drills with Russia, its chief accomplice in difficult Western dominance of worldwide affairs.

In February, the navies from China, Russia and South Africa got here collectively for drills on the southern tip of the African continent.

Whereas these workouts had been underway, Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted China’s most senior international coverage official on the Kremlin, underscoring Russia’s strengthening relationship with China and elevating issues within the West that Beijing may be prepared to supply Moscow stronger assist for its conflict in Ukraine.

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Chinese language President Xi Jinping additionally visited Putin in Moscow final month, however China’s International Minister stated this month that China wouldn’t promote weapons to both facet within the Ukraine conflict.