Implications Theresa May suggests AUKUS alliance could lead UK into conflict over Taiwan

China: Expert discusses impact of AUKUS alliance

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Theresa May, 64, has questioned Boris Johnson, 57, on the historic security pact he has agreed with his counterparts in the United States and Australia. The current Prime Minister revealed the ground-breaking alliance at a joint virtual press conference with Australia premier Scott Morrison and American President Joe Biden on Wednesday.

Boris Johnson said at 9 Downing Street: “This partnership will become increasingly vital for defending our interests in the Indo-Pacific region and, by extension, protecting our people back at home.”

But the Maidenhead MP, who served as Britain’s Prime Minister between 2016 and 2019, asked Mr Johnson about the possibility Britain could be dragged into conflict with China in the future.

She asked the Prime Minister in the House of Commons: “My right honourable friend said yesterday that this partnership has the aim of working hand-in-glove to preserve security and stability in the Indo-Pacific.

“What are the implications of this pact for the stance and response the United Kingdom would take should China attempt to invade Taiwan?”

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Her successor replied: “The United Kingdom remains determined to defend international law, and that is the strong advice we would give to our friends across the world and the strong advice we would give to the Government in being.”

Iain Duncan-Smith, the ex-Conservative Party leader from 2001 to 2003, appeared to applaud the Prime Minister’s AUKUS agreement.

The 67-year-old Brexit-backing MP for Chingford & Woodford Green said on Twitter: “Aukus is the beginning of a reset in the relationships and alliances in the Far East.”

“I believe it marks the start of democracies pushing back and rethinking the relationship between China and the free world,” he added.

However, former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, 72, has suggested the deal between London, Washington and Canberra risks starting a “new cold war”.

The now Independent MP for Islington North wrote on Twitter: “Starting a new cold war will not bring peace, justice and human rights to the world.”

France was also left frustrated by the announcement.

French foreign affairs minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, responded to the announcement by saying: “It’s really a stab in the back.”

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He added: “We had established a trusting relationship with Australia, and this trust was betrayed.”

But China has also expressed their concerns about the agreement.

The Global Times, which is a CCP-supporting Beijing newspaper, warned: “China will punish Australia relentlessly if it mounts more blatant provocations against China or even takes military action.”

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