A group of disputed islands known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China is seen in the East China Sea. Picture: REUTERS/KYODO
A group of disputed islands known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China is seen in the East China Sea. Picture: REUTERS/KYODO

Like it or not, the policies of the current US administration have unsettled the world, particularly the hostile stance it has taken towards China. So with the US presidential election called in favour of Joe Biden, hopes have been raised that the deportment of the US may be less destabilising and discomfiting in future.

Yet after Biden spoke by telephone with the leaders of Japan, the Republic of Korea and Australia on Thursday, the only takeaway the Western media has offered is that he agreed the Japan-US security treaty applies to the Diaoyu Islands, implying the US confrontation with China will continue should Biden enter the White House.

However, the real conclusion to be derived from the eagerness of foreign leaders to congratulate Biden on his election victory even before it has been officially announced is how desperate they are to turn their backs on the current administration and its divisive policies.

Though Beijing always keeps its door open for dialogue with Washington, that does not mean it will soften its bottom line, which certainly includes its sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands. China will never budge on this. As Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said, the Japan-US security treaty is a product of the Cold War era. It should not target a third country, nor should it threaten regional peace and stability. Nevertheless, China is always ready to work with the US to manage any differences.

Thanks to the joint efforts of the countries concerned and their consensus that the historical territorial disputes should be resolved through political means, both the East China and South China seas have remained tranquil. Countries in the region know that a stable development environment serves the interests of all. The only turbulence is that stirred up by Washington.

US secretary of state Mike Pompeo’s empty-handed return from his visits to five Asian countries in October served to highlight that no country in the region wants to make an either-or choice between Washington and Beijing. /Beijing, November 12

China Daily

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