US calls China ‘rogue state’, cites border attack
In a hard hitting speech, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday attacked China for its “rogue” attitude in its neighbourhood, specifically mentioning its recent border attacks against India. “The PLA (People’s Liberation Army) has escalated border tensions with India, the world’s most populous democracy. It’s militarising the South China Sea and illegally claiming more territory there, threatening vital sea lanes,” Pompeo said during an online conference on democracy in Copenhagen, Denmark. During questions he said democracies and freedom-loving peoples of the world needed to come together to tackle China.
Pompeo was careful to focus his criticism on the Chinese Communist Party but unusually cited Chinese leader, Xi Jinping, by name. “General Secretary Xi Jinping has green-lighted a brutal campaign of repression against Chinese Muslims, a human rights violation on a scale we haven’t seen since World War II. Now, the PLA has escalated border tensions with India,” he said.
Pompeo spoke a day after he expressed deep condolences to India on the death of 20 soldiers in violent clashes with Chinese troops at Galwan Valley in Ladakh on June 15.
Pompeo said China was responsible for “pushing disinformation and malicious cyber campaigns so as to drive a wedge between the US and Europe.” The Chinese Communist Party wants to undo the progress the free world has made and adopt a new set of rules and norms that accommodate Beijing.
He claimed Beijing had “lied about the coronavirus and let it spread to the rest of the world, while pressuring the WHO to assist its cover-up campaign. Hundreds of thousands of people have died, and the global economy has been decimated.” China continues to refuse to provide medical information or allow outside scientists.
Pompeo, who recently met Chinese Politburo member Yang Jiechi in Hawaii, said much of his conversation was about “the fundamental idea that we’re just watching [their] actions. It’s no longer enough to listen to what the Chinese Communist Party is saying. We can see their actions.” He ticked off a number of them, “Hong Kong, Tibet, Xinjiang, what they’re doing in India, what they’ve done in the economic zones along the Philippines and Malaysia and Indonesia and Vietnam, the coercion on Australia.”
The US minister warned that “China’s objective is in fact to single out and indeed to threaten to single out more directly” individual countries. He called for a collective response from the world’s major countries to what Beijing was doing. “America is engaging in a response to Chinese Communist Party and aggression in a way that America has not done for the past 20 years” and said this was now a bipartisan position.
The life expectancy of Chinese citizens now stands at 77.93 years and is within the category of upper-middle-income countries, the national health commission, said on Tuesday. The life expectancy of Chinese citizens had risen to 77.3 years in 2019, compared with 35 years in 1949, the beginning of the Communist Party of China's rule, according to a white paper released last year. According to World Bank data, India's life expectancy stood at 70 in 2020.
Hindu groups in Canada have complained to the country's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and are also exploring legal options over the poster of a film screened in Toronto on Sunday that they deem offensive. The film, Kaali, made by Leena Manimekalai, was shown at the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto as part of a multimedia storytelling project, Under the Tent. The community was upset over the poster depicting Goddess Kali smoking a cigarette.
Heavy rains have battered the eastern coast of Australia, resulting in floods across Sydney and other parts of New South Wales province. Nearly 50,000 residents across the state have been told to either evacuate or warned about evacuation order from the authorities, Reuters reported. Due to floods, more than 19,000 homes are facing power cuts, AFP reported. Hundreds of homes have been inundated in and around Sydney in the flood emergency, Reuters reported.
A teacher and a man in his 70s who had travelled from Mexico to visit his family were among the six people shot dead in Chicago's wealthy Highland Park suburb late Monday night after yet another horrific mass shooting incident in the United States. A 'person of interest' - Robert E Crimo III - was taken into custody shortly after the shooting and a high-powered rifle was recovered.
The competition between the US and China to explore outer space turned prickly after Chinese diplomats blasted the head of NASA and encouraged neighboring countries to support Beijing's plan for exploring the moon. China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Zhao Lijian on Monday accused NASA Administrator Bill Nelson of lying “through his teeth” in response to reported comments in a German tabloid about the space competition between the two countries.