China accuses Australia of 'absolutely unacceptable' act
China's embassy in Canberra has taken aim at the Albanese government over its comments regarding the Taiwan escalation triggered by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's controversial visit.
Foreign Minister Penny Wong met with her US and Japan counterparts Anthony Blinken and Hayashi Yoshimasa on the sidelines of the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on Friday before releasing a joint statement condemning China's reaction to Ms Pelosi's trip.
Beijing's unprecedented military drills in waters surrounding Taiwan have escalated to the point where ballistic missiles were fired over the sovereign island state.
"The Secretary (of State Anthony Blinken) and the Foreign Ministers urged the PRC to immediately cease the military exercises," the statement said.
Yet the Chinese embassy has hit back, saying it is "seriously concerned and strongly discontent" by the statement.
"It is absolutely unacceptable for the finger-pointing on China’s justified actions to safeguard state sovereignty and territorial integrity. We firmly oppose and sternly condemn this," it said.
The one word that left China furious during press conference
China continues to stand by its retaliation, saying it protects its national sovereignty and deters external Taiwan separatists. While Taiwan wishes to remain autonomous, China President Xi Jinping has stressed his desire to "reunify" the democratic island with the mainland.
A day earlier China's Assistant Foreign Minister Hua Chunying took aim at Australia and other US allies following their remarks, accusing Canberra of failing to dissuade Ms Pelosi from her visit.
"Now the US and its sidekicks have spoken up accusing China of “overreacting”," she said.
"But if they truly care about regional peace and stability, why hadn’t they stood up and tried to dissuade Pelosi early on? Couldn’t they have seen this coming and prevented it?"
Australia stands by position
On Sunday the Albanese government stood by its position, with cabinet minister Chris Bowen saying China's response is "over the top".
"We're going to act in Australia's national interests and in accordance with our values ... we will say what we believe should happen in the region and we will make statements even if other nations don't agree with those," he told Channel Nine.
Yet the Chinese embassy said Australia was "putting the cart before the horse and reversing the right from wrong".
"Instead of expressing sympathy and support to the victim, the Australian side has condemned the victim along with the perpetrators."
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