Yi warns Asians avoid being used as 'chess piece' by powers

TEHRAN, Jul. 11 (MNA) – China's foreign minister warned on Monday that countries should avoid being used as "chess pieces" by major powers in a region that he said was at risk of being reshaped by geopolitical factors.

Addressing the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) secretariat in Jakarta, Wang Yi, who was speaking through a translator, said many countries in the region were under pressure to take sides, Reuters reported.

"We should insulate this region from geopolitical calculations… from being used as chess pieces from major power rivalry and from coercion," he said, adding, "The future of our region should be in our own hands."

Wang's speech comes just days after he attended a G20 foreign ministers' meeting in Bali.

On the sidelines of the G20, Wang held a five-hour meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken with both describing their first in-person talks since October as "candid". 

Wang said on Monday he had told Blinken that both sides should discuss the establishment of rules for positive interactions and jointly uphold regionalism in the Asia-Pacific.

"The core elements are to support ASEAN centrality, uphold the existing regional corporation framework, and respect each other's legitimate rights and interests in the Asia-Pacific instead of aiming to antagonize or contain the other side," Wang said.


News Code 188951


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