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Europe sees China through Russian lens, and Beijing is not happy

Hong Kong (CNN)When the leaders of Europe's major western democratic nations and their allies met at two consecutive summits this week, their focus was clear. ..'s brutal attack on Ukraineis in its fifth month.

However, another country, China, was also in the limelight at these conferences. And Beijing isn't happy about it.

"We can see that the strategic partnership between Moscow and Beijing is deepening, and China's growing aggressiveness and its compulsory policies are for the safety of its allies and their partners. It will have an impact, "NATO Secretary-General Jens Stortenberg said in the news. Wednesday meeting.

"China is not our enemy, but we need to look clearly at the serious challenges that China represents," he said.

According to observers, there are still differences between the countries in the block regarding how to treat China. Some NATO members want to keep their focus on Russia head-on, but the United States (the strongest member of the block) has called China "the most seriouslong-term challenge to the international order. It is nailed as "". ..

However, this week's progress shows that China is higher than ever on the agenda of these agencies, showing that cooperation between the United States and its partners is progressing. ..

They also show a significant setback for Beijing in an attempt to drive a wedge between the American and European stances on China, observers say.

"The combination of the kind of language used in G7 and the (formally Chinese inclusion) NATO strategic document was certainly a blow to (China) and wanted them to be able to do it. It's a deaf thing. I'll prevent it. " Andrew Small, Senior Fellow of the Asian Program of the US German Marshall Foundation, said.

"It's a very strong time in terms of cross-Atlantic cooperation, which means it's of great concern to China," he said.

China's response

China's concerns are clear as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs pushed back NATO designations at regular press conferences this week. was.

"China is pursuing an independent foreign peace policy, which does not interfere with the domestic affairs or export ideology of other countries, and has long-term jurisdiction, economic coercion, or unilateral sanctions. It is even less involved in. "Systematic challenge". Zhao Lizian, a spokesperson for the ministry, said on Tuesday.

"We solemnly urge NATO to stop immediately disseminating false and provocative statements about China," he said, "after confusing Europe. We should stop trying to confuse Asia and the whole world. "

However, analysts say that Beijing's refusal to blame Russia's actions has led to its rhetoric (which blames NATO for the "chaos" in Europe) on a change in European views. It is a part of what we are promoting. In Ukraine, he actively condemned the United States and NATO for provoking Moscow, including the killing of civilians.

China was "very quickly and very clearly, at least in words, not so many acts, alongside Russia," while cross-Atlantic partners opposed Russia and Ukraine. Gathered in support of. Pepinbergsen, Research Fellow of the European Program at Chatham House Thinktank in London, spoke of the invasion.

He said the contrast between the two helped drive the emerging story of "democracy and autonomy" in Europe, adding that internal politics also played a role.

"In Eastern and Central Europe, where Russia is considered the greatest security threat, relations (with China) have already begun to unravel, but China is very clearly aligned with Russia. The fact that they are has accelerated the shift. "

As part of that, China seems to have underestimated the extent to which its stance reverberates through its relations with Europe. Europe is China's Lithuanian economic target over suspected human rights violations in the New River and relations between Hong Kong's freedom and the Baltic countries of Taiwan.

The miscalculation was demonstrated at a brief summit in April between leaders of China and the European Union. Toward the mediation of peace in Ukraine. China claims to be neutral and support peace, but has not taken any concrete steps in that direction.

Raising concerns about China from the G7, which consists of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States, was reflected in the block's joint communiqué announced after the summit on Tuesday. German Bavaria.

This document, which mentions China about 12 times, was mentioned four times in a statement by a G7 leader a year ago, while it touched on areas of cooperation, but in China's human rights record. The focus was on seeking improvement. And follow international rules.

And as a sign of how Russia shaped Brock's view of China, the group "pressured Beijing" to comply with UN resolutions and stop its military invasion. I asked. This statement followed what Washington called the "formal launch" on Sunday of the $ 600 billion G7 Infrastructure Investment Initiative, first released last year.

The move, which the EU said "demonstrate the power of development funding when reflecting democratic values," is a clear bid to counter China's flagship Belt and Road Initiative. was. Global impact.

'Raised Challenges'

According to the newly adopted strategic document by NATO, China is "a wide range of political and economic. We are adopting target and military tools. ”To enhance our global footprint and project power, while remaining uncertain about its strategy, intent, and strengthening of military power.

It also shows a "deepening of strategic partnership" between Russia and China, a "mutually strengthening attempt" to "counter" NATO's values ​​in a rules-based international order. Is shown.

The language that saw Russia move from the "strategic partner" of the 2010 document to the "most important and direct threat" in its current iteration clearly strengthened NATO's stance. I am.

This is especially important. Because in recent years NATO statements have begun to refer to China, and some members and observers have expressed concern that too much stance could turn China into an enemy.

Others consider China to be outside the region's major security interests.

Following the NATO meeting where leaders characterized China as a security issue last June, French President Emmanuel Macron said the move with the excuse that "China is not in the North Atlantic". Was disregarded.

Some of these concerns still exist, and observers say there are still differences in views on how China is treated within the block.

According to Pierre Harosh, a European security researcher at the Strategic Research Institute (IRSEM, Paris), within Europe such discussions are being promoted by the United States in a new "autonomous region vs. democracy". It extends to the story of. ..

Would you like to solidify the "Dragon Bear Monster" and show that there is a clear ideological "Cold War" between democracy and the autonomous region? It's convenient from a story point of view. Or the strategy of saying that the (better) two (China and Russia) are very different actors. In the future, they may even oppose each other. Harosh summed up the discussion.

However, even if there may be differences between member countries, it is clear that NATO is thinking more at this year's summit, a leader in New Zealand, Australia, South Korea, and Japan. Is historically included.

The move has been angry in China, and authorities have long claimed that NATO is trying to extend its presence to the Indo-Pacific.

"Cold war sewage cannot flow into the Pacific Ocean, which must be a general consensus in the Asia-Pacific region," edited Tuesday by the Communist Party-affiliated Nationalist Tabroid Global Times. Said.

However, observers have characterized this not as an extension of NATO to the Indo-Pacific, but as a bid to strengthen relations between "similar countries" in the words of the NATO Secretariat. increase.

According to the German Marshall Foundation Small, democracy across the Pacific may consider the threats it faces to be more relevant, as is democracy in Europe. ..

"All of these conditioned by China's challenge and Russia's challenge give us a much more sense that democratic allies need to be coordinated more effectively," he said. Stated.

Correction: In previous versions of this story, the month of the EU-China Summit was incorrect. It was April.