China urges Australia to abide by one-China principle

Beijing says “One China” principle is crucial to China Australia relations

His Anzac Day message invoked the words of two U.S. generals and reflected on Australia's ANZUS alliance with the United States.

Defence Minister Peter Dutton, for his part, drew the public's attention to the military build-up in the Pacific, suggesting there is a "significant amount of (military) activity" there amid an "animosity" between Taiwan and China, with Beijing claiming the former is its territory under the "One China" policy.

Australian home affairs secretary Michael Pezzullo said in his Anzac Day message, released on Sunday that Australia should do everything in its power to find peace "until we are faced with the only prudent, if sorrowful, course" of opting for war.

Tensions have simmered between China and its neighbors in the South China Sea, with the Philippines most recently protesting the presence of Chinese vessels near disputed reefs.

The Chinese Embassy in Australia responded shortly, expressing "strong displeasure and resolute opposition" to the politician's announcement.

Australian officials and lawmakers were split on Pezzullo and Dutton's comments amid rising tensions with Beijing.

Australia must reduce the likelihood of war, "but not at the cost of our precious freedom", Pezzullo said.

"Working with the United States, our allies and Indo-Pacific neighbours, we will continue to advance Australia's interests by investing in the Australian Defence Force, particularly across Northern Australia", Mr Morrison said in a statement, published by The Australian.

Labor frontbencher Bill Shorten said Mr Pezzullo's language was inflammatory.

ASEAN leaders tell Myanmar coup general to end killings
Another diplomat said humanitarian aid could be offered to Myanmar if conditions improved. The face-to-face summit is the first by ASEAN leaders in more than a year.

Australia's relationship with China, its top trading partner, started to significantly deteriorate in April previous year, when Prime Minister Scott Morrison called for an independent inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus, which was first registered in Wuhan in the country's Hubei province in December 2019.

Previously, the Defence Minister said war with China over Taiwan "should not be discounted".

Speaking in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said he hoped Australia was aware of the sensitive nature of the issue and could "avoid sending any wrong signal to Taiwan independence forces".

What is the rift between Australia and China?

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According to a Newsweek report last week, Taiwan planned to launch one of its largest military drills, the annual Han Kuang exercise.

The comments follow the contentious decision by Foreign Minister Marise Payne to scrap Victoria's controversial infrastructure agreement with Beijing linked to China's Belt and Road initiative.

Beijing's military buildup, combined with moves to fortify its hold on disputed territory in the South China Sea, has raised fears that it could look to deny the US military access to waters off China's coastline.

Northern Australia is a key region for Australian Defence Force bases, given its proximity to the Asia Pacific.

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