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Beijing Tries to Strengthen Its Ties with the Pacific Islands

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin announced on May 24 that State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi will pay official visits to the Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, and Timor-Leste.  The visits will take place from May 26 to June 4. He will pay a “cloud visit” to the Federated States of Micronesia, hold a video meeting with the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of the Cook Islands and the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Niue, and host the second China-Pacific Island Countries Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Fiji.

China has recently disclosed that it signed a security treaty with the Solomon Islands, which includes police training,  a possible military exchange and setting up a naval base in the Solomon Islands for the People’s Liberation Army.

An intelligence officer for a U.S. ally said that Beijing is negotiating with Kiribati and at least one other Pacific island on a treaty similar to the Solomon Islands’ treaty.

1. People’s Daily, May 26, 2022
2. Radio France International, May 21, 2022国际/20220521-中国寻求与基里巴斯签协议-美澳担忧