Eyes on China: India, Japan, US, Aus to hold Quad meet on Oct 6

New Delhi: Foreign ministers of the Quad, the informal security forum comprising India, the US, Japan and Australia, are expected to hold a much-awaited meeting in Tokyo on October 6 with the objective of tightening strategic cooperation and advance the goal of a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.

The meeting will discuss collaboration among Quad countries in counter-terrorism, cyber and maritime security, development finance, humanitarian assistance and disaster response, according to South Block officials.

While Beijing is expected to take aim at the four partners for seeking to target China at the meeting, there has been a sea change since the ministers met informally on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly on September 26, 2019. Quad is expected to take steps towards an institutionalized dialogue at the meeting, where Chinese actions since the rise of global pandemic from Wuhan will come under a magnifying glass.

The Quad ministerial comes at a time when the Donald Trump administration has made a U-turn on US policy towards China.

The armies of India and China are still locked in a staring match in Ladakh with both sides losing soldiers in the June 15 Galwan Valley flare-up.

Australia’s relationship with China, its largest trading partner, has nosedived with Beijing imposing an 80% tariff on barley, launching an anti-dumping investigation of Australian wine, blocking Australian beef, arresting an Australian journalist and banning two academics from visiting China.

The situation with Japan is no different, with Chinese warmongering over the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea forcing Tokyo to increase its defense budget to a record.

In short, all the four Quad partners have their own reasons for being upset with China’s aggressive posture under paramount leader Xi Jinping under the mask of the deadly coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic. (Hindustan Times)

Image courtesy of (credit: Wikimedia)

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