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In the Solomon Islands, China Seeks to Normalize Its Global Security Presence

MIN READApr 8, 2022 | 17:17 GMT

Chinese President Xi Jinping talks with Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare (not pictured) during a meeting in Beijing on Oct. 9, 2019.

Chinese President Xi Jinping talks with Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare (not pictured) during a meeting in Beijing on Oct. 9, 2019.

(PARKER SONG/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

China's recently inked security agreement with the Solomon Islands is the latest in a series of moves by Beijing to normalize its international security role. At the end of March, the Solomon Islands initialed a draft Framework Agreement with China to allow the deployment of Chinese police or military forces to the island nation to manage crises. The deal, similar to one inked with Australia in 2017, facilitates the deployment of security forces should the Solomon Islands request them. In November 2021, Australia and New Zealand deployed security forces to Honiara to help the Solomon Islands government deal with violent protests, many of which targeted Chinese commercial interests. Honiara argues that the new deal is part of the government policy of ''friends to all, enemies to none,'' but a leaked draft has stirred consternation among other members of the Pacific Island Forum, most notably Australia and New Zealand. ...

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