U.S. President-elect Joe Biden is expected to pull off the line of incumbent President Donald Trump’s Asian foreign policy, which goes against alleged expansionist Chinese designs in the region, reports claim. Biden’s appointment as National Security Advisor to Jake Sullivan has reinforced the speculation that his stance on China and Taiwan will take Trump’s line, the Asia Times reported on Saturday.Sullivan called for the intensification of the Freedom of Navigation Operations (FONOPs) against China in the South China Sea (SCS) to mark a likely escalation of Trump’s strategy.
“We should be devoting more assets and resources to ensuring and reinforcing, and holding up alongside our partners, the freedom of navigation in the South China Sea,” said Sullivan.
Richard Javad Heydarian, writing for the Asia Times, said that Biden’s top advisors are now asking for more China to control freedom of navigation and political support for Taiwan.
China’s military activities in the region, including drills, training, port visits and operations, increased by around 50% to 65% in 2020.
This is a substantial rise from 44 in 2019, the Asia Maritime Openness Project reported at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies in Washington DC.
China has been flexing its muscles in the area through offensive drills in contested SCS waters, according to the article.
Recently, live-fire drills with Harbin Z-9 helicopters and sophisticated anti-ship missiles were performed during mock war games in Sanya, the southern tip of Hainan Island.
China also unveiled the first domestic-built Shandong aircraft carrier last December, and plans to build a new dry dock in Hainan that can be used by China’s next-generation Type-003 Supercarrier.The U.S. has drawn the full-on offensive of China in the region. It’s with improved FONOPs.The U.S. warships are now moving across the 12-mile radius of the Beijing-occupied islands and land features around the South China Sea. The frequency of annual FONOPs has been raised.The US has also taken an extraordinary decision to effectively back the territorial claims of China’s competitors in the South China Sea.Washington has also stepped up its support to Taiwan, which China considers to be a renegade region that must finally be absorbed into the mainland.Trump’s administration cleared up to $5 billion worth of weapons sales to Taiwan this year and approved 11 arms sales packages to Taiwan, including the $280 million Field Information Communications System (FICS).
It also approved the sale of MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) and AGM-84H Remotely Piloted Ground Attack Missile Response (SLAM-ER) weapons, Asia Times announced. In order to fight Chinese expansionist design, the U.S., with other major regional forces, including Japan, Britain, France and India, has also begun FONOP operations in the region.