World Malaysia warns new Indo-Pacific pact may trigger nuclear arms race

17:35  18 september  2021
17:35  18 september  2021 Source:   reuters.com

‘The world is a jungle’: France fumes at US-Australia nuclear submarine deal

  ‘The world is a jungle’: France fumes at US-Australia nuclear submarine deal French President Emmanuel Macron’s team is outraged at President Joe Biden's announcement to share U.S. and British nuclear submarine technology with Australia, which scuttles an agreement for Australia to purchase French vessels. © Provided by Washington Examiner “The American choice to exclude a European ally and partner such as France from a structuring partnership with Australia, at a time when we are facing unprecedented challenges in the Indo-Pacific region ...

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Malaysia on Saturday expressed concerns that Australia's plan to build nuclear-powered submarines under a new pact with Britain and the United States could catalyze a nuclear arms race in the Indo-Pacific region.

Australia will build eight nuclear-powered submarines under an Indo-Pacific security partnership that has riled China.

"It will provoke other powers to also act more aggressively in the region, especially in the South China Sea," Malaysia's Prime Minister Office said in a statement.

Video: Australia to build eight nuclear-powered submarines under new Indo-Pacific security pact (Reuters)

UK, US and Australia launch landmark security pact

  UK, US and Australia launch landmark security pact The three nations agree to share advanced technologies, including nuclear-powered submarine know-how. © Ministry of Defence The new defence partnership will initially focus on a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines for the Australian Navy The partnership, labelled Aukus, aims to "defend our shared interests in the Indo-Pacific", the leaders of the three nations said in a joint statement.Along with technology, industrial bases and supply chains will also be shared.The defence pact could see Australia scrap a deal to build French-designed submarines, Australian media report.

The statement did not mention China, but Beijing's foreign policy in the region has been increasingly assertive, particularly its maritime claims in the resource-rich South China Sea, some of which conflict with Malaysia's own claims.

"As a country within ASEAN, Malaysia holds the principle of maintaining ASEAN as a Zone of Peace, Freedom and Neutrality (ZOFPAN)," the statement said.

Malaysia urged all parties to avoid any provocation and arms competition in the region. (Reporting by Mei Mei Chu; Editing by Christina Fincher)

US-China policy: Biden bringing together Japan, Australia and India to stare down China .
Forget France, AUKUS and nuclear-powered submarines -- one of the most important moments for the future of US influence in Asia is due to take place on Friday in Washington. © Alex Wong/Getty Images US President Joe Biden and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken participate in a virtual meeting with leaders of Quadrilateral Security Dialogue countries on March 12 in the White House.

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