NATO Secretary Jens Stoltenberg warned Monday that China is investing heavily in new weapons, posing a threat to the transatlantic alliance, according to The Washington Examiner.
“China is investing massively in new weapons…It is coming closer to us, from the Arctic to Africa, and by investing in our infrastructure”, Stoltenberg said. In response, NATO foreign ministers decided to designate a portion of their annual meeting to combatting China’s rising power, according to The Washington Examiner.
#NATO Foreign Ministers will meet virtually this week to discuss several key topics including the Alliance’s adaptation to future threats, security challenges to our mutual interests & values posed by #China & @NATO’s ongoing response to the #COVID19 crisis. pic.twitter.com/7FZFmHzRT8
— Ambassador Hutchison (@USAmbNATO) November 30, 2020
During an online briefing, Ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchinson was asked about the policies that should be implemented in response to Stoltenberg’s warning. Hutchinson stated that NATO is making space an operational domain in order to monitor China’s satellites and ensure that they cannot be used against other countries. In addition, they are ensuring that the US has open sea navigation throughout the world, as “China’s Belt and Road Initiative would indicate that they are building up to have a lot of control over navigation that would affect trade as well as defense”, said Hutchinson, according to The US Department of State.
Stoltenberg later stated that, “China is not our adversary…Its rise presents an important opportunity for our economies and trade. We need to engage with China on issues such as arms control and climate change”. He then stipulated that “China does not share our values…It does not respect fundamental human rights and tries to intimidate other countries. We must address this together, both as NATO allies and as a community of like-minded countries”, reported The Washington Examiner.