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Country Risk

China lodges protests at New Zealand’s comments on future South China Sea strategy

11 July 2018

The Chinese government has lodged diplomatic representations to protest comments made in a new defence strategy paper released by New Zealand

The New Zealand Defence Ministry released the country’s defence policy statement for 2018 on 6 July. The document, which outlines Wellington’s strategic priorities in the coming years, referred to China as a country that has “expanded its military and coastguard presence in disputed areas of maritime Asia”.

The paper also made multiple references to China’s construction of artificial islands, and military posts in the South China Sea. “These posts now feature new radar and communications arrays, airstrips and hangars, deep water harbours, and weapons systems, which provide China with the ability to quickly deploy a range of additional capabilities in and around key international shipping lanes,” it added.

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