ASEAN members not chess pieces in geopolitical competition, says China

ASEAN members not chess pieces in geopolitical competition, says China

This undated photo shows Wang Wenbin, the spokesman of China's Foreign Ministry, speaking at a press conference in Beijing, China. PHOTO FMPRC.GOV. CN BEIJING members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations are not chess pieces in geopolitical competition and the United States should give up its Cold War mentality and small groups for confrontation in the Indo-Pacific region, Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said.

After the US announced it would host a US-ASEAN special summit on May 12 and 13 in Washington, the ASEAN said on Monday that it was the second bilateral special summit since 2016 and the first in-person engagement for ASEAN and US leaders since 2017.

The region of Asia-Pacific is a region for cooperation and development, not a chessboard for games between major powers, said Wang at a daily news conference, pointing out that every party should treasure the fact that the region is maintaining peace, stability and development in general.

The US should comply with regional countries' shared aspiration for peace and win-win cooperation, respecting the political systems, development paths and cultural values of Asian countries while participating in East Asian regional cooperation, Wang said.

The spokesman said that the US should follow the ASEAN way, which is characterized by openness, inclusiveness and consensus through consultations, take concrete measures in order to honor its commitment to supporting ASEAN's central role and to facilitate peace, development and prosperity in the region.

In a news release, Wang said that China's peacekeeping troops have brought peace and security to people suffering from war over the past three decades, and China will work with all peace-loving countries to contribute to world peace and development.

China has sent almost 50,000 troops to participate in 25 UN peacekeeping operations in more than 20 countries and regions over the past three decades, Wang said.

He said that China's Blue Helmets show that the country has always been a promoter of world peace, a contributor to global development and a champion of international order.