Oz sticks to stand on China’s disputed air defence zone despite Beijing criticism
Sydney – Australia has stood by its criticism of China’s decision to impose an air-defence zone in the East China Sea without consultation, despite Beijing’s rebuke.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said that it is an Australian policy to oppose any unilateral action by any country that could add to the tensions that currently exist in the disputed zone of East China Sea, News.com.au reports.
Bishop also said that Australia was not supporting Japan in its territorial dispute with China, and it was not the only country to express concerns about China’s recent move.
Her comments drew a sharp rebuke from China, but she denied overstepping the mark.
Federal Labor leader Bill Shorten said that the Tony Abbott government must handle foreign affairs competently as it had a “rocky start” with China after it emerged as a new diplomatic hotspot.
However, Bishop said that she doesn’t believe the disagreement will impact on the Abbott government’s hopes to secure a free trade agreement with China next year.