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Beijing: Ahead of the first in-person Quad summit among the leaders of the US, India, Japan and Australia in Washington, China on Friday criticised the grouping, saying the formation of “exclusive closed cliques” runs against the trend of times and will find “no support”.

At the invitation of US President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his counterparts Scott Morrison of Australia and Yoshihide Suga of Japan have gathered in the American capital for the first-ever in-person Quad summit at the White House on Friday.

Asked for China’s reaction as the Quad summit is expected to address the challenges and rising risks Beijing poses in the Indo-Pacific region, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told the media that the quadrilateral grouping should not target any third country and its interests.

“China always believes that any regional cooperation mechanism should not target a third party or harm its interests. Seeking exclusive closed cliques against a third country runs against the trend of the times and aspiration of countries in the region. It will find no support,” he said.

Defending the Chinese claims in the South China Sea, Zhao said: “China is a builder of world peace, contributor of global development and upholder of world order”.

“The growth of China means the growth for peace and stability in the world and China’s contribution to peace, stability and development in Asia Pacific is therefore all to see.

“Relevant countries should do more that is conducive to solidarity and cooperation with the four countries in the region,” he added.          




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