China Warns AUKUS Nuclear Submarine Deal Is Threat To World Peace

The leaders of the UK, US and Australia announced the agreement following a summit in San Diego.
Leon Neal via PA Wire/PA Images

China has warned that a nuclear submarine deal struck between the UK, America and Australia is a threat to world peace.

The leaders of the three countries - known as AUKUS - announced the agreement following talks in San Diego.

It will see Australia obtain its first ever conventionally-armed but nuclear-powered submarines.

The move comes amid mounting international concerns about the military ambitions of the Chinese government.

However, the Chinese mission to the United Nations said the move breached the “object and purpose” of the global non-proliferation treaty (NPT) which is designed to limit the number of nuclear weapons in the world.

In a series of tweets, they said: “The nuclear submarine cooperation plan released today by AUKUS is a blatant act that constitutes serious nuclear proliferation risks, undermines international non-proliferation system, fuels arms races, and hurts peace and stability in the region.

“The irony of Aukus is that two nuclear weapons states who claim to uphold the highest nuclear non-proliferation standard are transferring tons of weapons-grade enriched uranium to a non-nuclear-weapon state, clearly violating the object and purpose of the NPT.

“Such a textbook case of double standard will damage the authority and effectiveness of the international non-proliferation system.

“We urge the trio to honour their obligations as members of the NPT and respond to the (will) of the international community.”

The new submarines will not be nuclear-armed and the NPT allows the transfer of fissile material for non-weapons use, like naval propulsion, without the need for monitoring by the UN watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency.

In a joint-statement, Rishi Sunak, Joe Biden and Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese said: “For more than a century, our three nations have stood shoulder to shoulder, along with other allies and partners, to help sustain peace, stability, and prosperity around the world, including in the Indo-Pacific.

“We believe in a world that protects freedom and respects human rights, the rule of law, the independence of sovereign states, and the rules-based international order.

“The steps we are announcing today will help us to advance these mutually beneficial objectives in the decades to come.”


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