Putin says AUKUS harms regional stability

Advertisement

Russia has repeatedly voiced its concerns over the new bloc….reports Asian Lite News

The AUKUS, a security partnership between Australia, Britain and the United States, “undoubtedly” undermines regional stability, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said.

“In my opinion, it is good to be friends with each other, but bad to be friends against someone. This impairs the stability that we all talk about and we all care about,” Putin said during an interview with US TV channel CNBC on Wednesday.

He said that he hopes the situation will not develop according to some unpredictable scenario and will not cause any additional tensions in the region.

Australia, Britain and the United States announced the establishment of the AUKUS partnership on September 15 and under the arrangement, Washington and London will support Canberra in building nuclear-powered submarines.

Russia has repeatedly voiced its concerns over the new bloc.

Russian officials told US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland during her recent visit to Russia that the AUKUS not only hurts the existing security architecture in Asia-Pacific, but also carries the risk of undermining the global nonproliferation regime, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said Thursday.

Last week, relations between the European Union (EU) and the US have come under fire as some members of the European Parliament (MEPs) urged the union to reposition itself with increased autonomy.

Frustrated by Washington’s recent unilateral moves, especially the signing of the trilateral Australia-United Kingdom-United States (AUKUS) security partnership and its push for military withdrawal from Afghanistan, the MEPs on Tuesday started their first October plenary by spending two and a half hours debating the transatlantic partnership, Xinhua news agency reported.

“I’m disappointed by President (Joe) Biden,” said Belgian MEP Hilde Vautmans.

“He claims America’s back. Fair enough. But does that mean that in his perception, in his mind, and in his strategic approach, that also Europe is back? No.”

She recalled that the Biden administration did not consult its European partners when announcing its withdrawal from Afghanistan and “completely sidelined” the Europeans in the AUKUS deal. Moreover, he did not even take the step to abolish American tariffs on European steel, added Vautmans.

German MEP Bernd Lange highlighted the trade disputes between the EU and the US. “The honeymoon is over,” he said.

Concerning the steel tariff row, Lange noted that the EU will double its counter measures if a solution is not found by the end of November. Meanwhile, the US submarine deal with Australia “is certainly not something which has helped to make our relationship more stable,” he said.

ALSO READ: Terrorists entering Afghanistan from Syria, Iraq: Putin