News / Asia

US, Australia Finalize Deal to Expand American Troop Presence

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, third from left, and Defense Minister David Johnston, second from left, meet with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, second from right, and U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, right, at the Australia-US Minist
Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, third from left, and Defense Minister David Johnston, second from left, meet with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, second from right, and U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, right, at the Australia-US Minist
VOA News

Top U.S. and Australian officials have signed a deal that expands American air and naval presence in northern Australia.

The agreement was inked Tuesday during a visit to Sydney by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Pentagon Chief Chuck Hagel, the finalization of a 2011 deal seen as a key part of the U.S. rebalance to Asia. The deal will put 2,500 Marines in Darwin by 2017.

Kerry said the agreement will help Australia and the U.S. deal with regional security issues of mutual importance.

"We do face new challenges. The South China Sea questions, the uncertainties in the Japan Sea and elsewhere, North Korea, and of course foreign fighters who go to various parts of the world and learn jihadism and come back with bad intentions. So there's a lot for us to work on together," said Kerry.

East China Sea, Darwin, AustraliaEast China Sea, Darwin, Australia
x
East China Sea, Darwin, Australia
East China Sea, Darwin, Australia


Kerry and Hagel later discussed a wide range of security issues with their Australian counterparts, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Defense Minister David Johnston.

The U.S. and Australian leaders sought to allay concerns that their countries' closer military relationship is aimed at containing China's rise, as Beijing claims. 

Kerry said the U.S. does not want "conflict and confrontation" with China, but hopes Beijing can become a "cooperative partner" on the global stage. 

Earlier Tuesday, Bishop told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that both countries are only trying to support the "long-term peace, stability and prosperity of our region."

Ahead of the Tuesday talks, Hagel insisted Washington is firmly committed to the Asia rebalance, saying the U.S. is a "Pacific power" that is "not going anywhere."

The U.S. and many of its Asian allies are concerned that China is acting aggressively towards the neighbors with which it has territorial disputes.

At an ASEAN meeting that wrapped up earlier this week in Myanmar, also known as Burma, Kerry pushed unsuccessfully for parties in the disputes to agree to refrain from provocative actions.

China's foreign ministry responded to the proposal by accusing Washington of stoking tensions in the region.

A State Department spokesman said Monday that Washington will monitor the disputed South China Sea to assess whether de-escalatory steps are being taken.

The United States has accused China of asserting itself militarily in territorial disputes with Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Philippines in the South China Sea, and competing claims with Japan over a group of uninhabited islands northeast of Taiwan.

You May Like

VOA Exclusive: Interview With Myanmar President Thein Sein

Thein Sein calls allegations that minority Muslim Rohingya are fleeing alleged torture in Rakhine state a media fabrication More

Video Better Protective Suit Sought for Ebola Caregivers

Current suit is uncomfortable, requires too many steps for removal, increasing chance of deadly contact with virus More

UN Rights Commission Investigates Eritrea

Three-member commission will start collecting first-hand information from victims and other witnesses in Switzerland and Italy next week More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Frankie Fook-lun Leung from: Los Angeles
August 12, 2014 1:14 PM
This kind of bilateral arrangement reinforces China's Paranoia that China is being contained by USA and its allies, big and small. US-China relationship will be in a period of tension and possible hostility despite those diplomatic niceties.


by: Sam Chow from: Hong Kong
August 12, 2014 6:04 AM
China's claim to the Spratly Islands has been there long before territorial waters was extended from 12 miles to 120 miles. US is giving false hopes to Vietnam and the Phillippines in a war China will never give up, and the US could never win. It spoils bilateral relations and regional cooperation with China, driving it towards Russia.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concernsi
X
November 19, 2014 11:39 PM
The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.
Video

Video What Jon Stewart Learned About Iran From 'Rosewater'

Jon Stewart, host of the satirical news program "The Daily Show" talks with Saman Arbabi of Voice of America's Persian service about Stewart's directorial debut, "Rosewater."
Video

Video Lebanese Winemakers Thrive Despite War Next Door

In some of the most volatile parts of Lebanon, where a constant flow of refugees crosses the border from Syria, one industry continues to flourish against the odds. Lebanese winemakers say after surviving a brutal civil war in the 1970s and 80s, they can survive anything. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon.
Video

Video China's Rise Closely Watched

China’s role as APEC host this week allowed a rare opportunity for Beijing to showcase its vision for the global economy and the region. But as China’s stature grows, so have tensions with other countries, including the United States. VOA’s Bill Ide in Beijing reports on how China’s rise as a global power is seen among Chinese and Americans.

All About America

AppleAndroid