China slams American military bases in Oz as hangover of 'Cold War mentality'
Sydney, May 16 (ANI): China has cricitised the United States for setting up a new military base in Australia, and accused both countries of having a "Cold War mentality.
Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr was reportedly grilled about the new base during three high-level meetings in Beijing, including one with Chinese counterpart Foreign Minister Yang Jeichi.
"The most objective way of saying it is my three Chinese partners invited me to talk about enhanced Australian defence cooperation with the United States. I think their view can be expressed that the time for Cold War alliances have long since past," The Telegraph quoted Carr, as saying.
However, a prominent Chinese defence strategist and former People's Liberation Army officer, Song Xiaojun said Australia could not juggle its friendships with China and the United States indefinitely, and needed to pick a side.
"Australia has to find a godfather sooner or later. [It] depends on who is more powerful and based on the strategic environment." Roughly a quarter of all Australian exports are sent to China," he said.
The first batch of 2,500 US Marines were deployed in the northern Australian city of Darwin in April, as the US seek to bolster its presence in the Asia-Pacific region.
America is also building closer ties with several South East Asian countries, which has drawn sharp responses, and accusations of "encirclement" from China. (ANI)
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