No ‘exclusive cliques’ should be formed: China on first Quad summit

Beijing:  China said on Monday that no “exclusive cliques” should be formed as it accused some countries of trying to “drive a wedge” among regional nations citing the “China threat” and asserted that they will “end up nowhere”.

Quad countries involving the US, India, Australia and Japan held their first virtual summit on Friday during which President Joe Biden told leaders of the coalition that a “free and open” Indo-Pacific is essential to their countries and vowed that his country was committed to working with its partners and allies in the region to achieve stability.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended the virtual summit alongside Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

“Relevant countries should abandon the Cold War mentality and ideological bias, do not form exclusive cliques and act in a way conducive to solidarity, unity, regional peace and stability,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told a media briefing here.

He was answering a question about the first Leaders’ Summit of the Quad countries and the reported remarks by US National Secretary Advisor Jake Sullivan that the four leaders discussed the challenge posed by China and said all four believed the democracies could help compete with autocracy.

“For some time, some countries have been exaggerating the so-called China threat’. China challenges to drive a wedge among regional countries to sow discord between their relations with China, Zhao said.

“What they have done is against the trend of times which is peace, development and win-win cooperation and runs counter to the common aspirations of people in the region, he said.

“They will gain no support and will end up nowhere,” he said.

“The state-to-state exchanges and cooperation should be conducive for improving mutual understanding and trust among the countries and should not be targeted against and undermine the interests of third parties,” he said.

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