Crossing: Baerbock does not rule out frigate in Taiwan Strait

Crossing: Baerbock does not rule out frigate in Taiwan Strait

Two German navy ships are setting off on a Pacific mission on Tuesday. The route could certainly have an explosive impact on foreign policy.

Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock does not rule out the possibility that the frigate “Baden-Württemberg” will transit the Taiwan Strait on her upcoming Pacific mission. During her visit to New Zealand on Saturday, the Green politician said that the route of the warship and a supply ship would not be announced in advance. At the same time, she emphasized that the “right of peaceful passage” also applies to the Taiwan Strait. “The same rules apply there as in all comparable sea areas where our ships and other ships sail.” The training mission of the two ships takes place on this basis.

Circle around Taiwan on the first Pacific mission

The frigate “Baden-Württemberg” and the task force supplier “Frankfurt am Main” will start a trip around the world on Tuesday, during which they will enter the Pacific through the Panama Canal and later also cross the South China Sea. There was already a comparable mission from August 2021 to February 2022. The frigate “Bayern” took part in maneuvers with allies at the time, but avoided Taiwan.

Crossing the Taiwan Strait could be seen as a provocation by China. The Communist People’s Republic claims the Democratic Republic of Taiwan as its own territory and has repeatedly threatened to invade. The USA, Great Britain and France still show a military presence in the strait between Taiwan and China.

Before Xi’s trip to Europe: Baerbock criticizes China’s subsidy practices

Before Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Europe, Baerbock also criticized China’s state subsidy practices and did not rule out countermeasures. “That’s actually how all the major economies in the world do things: they advocate for international rules and then have to protect their own markets accordingly if the rules are broken,” she said at a press conference with her colleague Winston Peters.

“We hope that this doesn’t have to happen. Because if everyone sticks to the rules, then we don’t need any countermeasures,” she emphasized. However, the European Union is “concerned” that there are government subsidies from China in electromobility and other areas that would distort balanced competition.

China’s head of state and party leader Xi will meet with French President Emmanuel Macron and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in Paris on Monday at the start of a trip to Europe. The EU Commission is currently examining whether sales of Chinese electric cars in Europe are being illegally subsidized and whether countermeasures need to be taken. That should be the main topic of the meeting.

Climate research in Antarctica: cooperation agreed

During Baerbock’s visit to Auckland, the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) agreed on a research collaboration with the New Zealand Antarctic Institute on climate change in the southern polar region. An international project is to be prepared for 2028 and 2029 to collect the largest database to date on Antarctica. Baerbock also visited the University of Auckland’s Space Center.

New Zealand is the second stop on the minister’s week-long trip; on Friday she was in Adelaide, South Australia, for political talks. There hasn’t been a German foreign minister in either country for 13 years. On Sunday we continue to Fiji. No German chief diplomat has ever visited the island state in the South Pacific.

Source: Stern

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