Police remove two Chinese defence attaches from Pacific Islands Forum meeting | Pacific Islands Forum | The Guardian

Fiji’s prime minister, Frank Bainimarama, acknowledged the US’s reengagement with the region, saying: “It is clear the US is certainly looking a lot more like the Pacific partner we have traditionally held it to be.”

In her virtual address to Pacific leaders on Wednesday morning, Harris acknowledged the diplomatic void that the US had left in recent years, saying: “We recognise that in recent years, the Pacific islands may not have received the diplomatic attention and support that you deserve. So today I am here to tell you directly: we are going to change that.”

She also appeared to take a swipe at China’s involvement in the Pacific, speaking of “bad actors” in the region.

“At a time when we see bad actors seeking to undermine the rules-based order, we must stand united,” Harris said. “In this region and around the world, the United States believes it is important to strengthen the international rules-based order – to defend it, to promote it and to build on it.

“These international rules and norms have brought peace and stability to the Pacific for more than 75 years – principles that importantly state that the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all states must be respected; principles that allow all states, big and small, to conduct their affairs free from aggression or coercion.”

 

Source: Police remove two Chinese defence attaches from Pacific Islands Forum meeting | Pacific Islands Forum | The Guardian