China must build regional security pattern: Daily

September 20th, 2012 - 2:21 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Sep 20 (IANS) China has the important task of building a “regional security pattern” in Asia as it lacks a safety mechanism, said a state-run Chinese daily Thursday.

An article in the Global Times said: “If the future Asian security pattern is compared to a chess game, the Diaoyu Islands dispute is just one move. At the strategic level, we need to learn how to arrange the layout of the chess game and how to play.”

It said that China is a rapidly rising country and its “next move will greatly influence the Asian security structure”.

“Therefore, the Diaoyu Islands issue does not just concern the interests of China and Japan, but also is related to the interests of Northeast Asia, or even the whole of Asia. Look at the countries in the Asia-Pacific region. Every one of them is keeping a close eye on China’s every move,” the daily said.

The disputed islands in the East China Sea, which are also claimed by Taiwan, lie on a vital shipping route and are surrounded by large hydrocarbon deposits beneath them.

Japan says it has controlled the islands since 1895 until its surrender at the end of World War II. The islands were controlled by the US from 1945 to 1972 and subsequently returned to Japan’s control. China claims the islands’ discovery and control since the 14th century.

The article said that when it comes to safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity, China can achieve its goals regardless of others’ views.

“However, China is different than before. Today’s China shoulders the important task of building a regional security pattern in Asia,” it said.

The Cold War left Asia lingering in the shadow of World War II.

“Although Asia has become the fastest growing region in the world, fundamental changes did not occur in its basic postwar political, security structure. Compared to Europe, Asia still lacks a safety mechanism with a set of operating rules headed by one or a few large countries,” the daily added.

It went on to say that that an economically powerful, politically independent big country did not emerge in postwar Asia. “An economic driving engine like Germany or France was absent in Asia.”

“Although the US is not an Asian country, it is able to dominate Asian affairs, whereas Asia has not been able to balance the power of the US,” the article noted.

The daily stressed that the “rise of China not only economically drives the forming of the Asian century. It will surely change the security pattern in Asia, whether intentionally or unintentionally. The rise of China is bound to become the backbone of the new system”.

“…we should shoulder more responsibilities for the whole of Asia. The next step is how to use our strength to form a widely recognized Asian security mechanism. We need to establish clear strategic goals,” it added.

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