A fleet including Australian warships will arrive in Shanghai to take part in the 2022 World Cup, according to the country’s defence minister.
Key points: Chinese President Xi Jinping will attend the tournament as a guest of the Australian prime minister, with Australia also set to be in attendanceThe warships will be joined by Australian, New Zealand and French warshipsThe warships are to be joined on the first day of the tournament by an Australian destroyer, a French cruiser and a New Zealand frigate.
China’s President Xi is also scheduled to take a trip to the state of Zhejiang province, which is home to the Chinese Navy, to attend the opening ceremony.
The Australian prime Minister has previously been outspoken about the need to boost Australia’s defence capabilities, saying China was a threat to the United States and the United Kingdom.
China has said it will send at least six patrol ships to the South China Sea, where the two sides are locked in a territorial dispute.
Mr Xi has repeatedly stressed that China will not accept any interference in the maritime domain of other countries.
“The South China sea is our own territory, the waters are our own,” Mr Xi said in September.
The military-to-military situation in the South Sea will be resolved in accordance with the rules of the international law, the rules enshrined in international law.””
[China] has made its position clear, and we have also made it clear to the international community that we do not wish to be involved in any disputes.”
“The military-to-military situation in the South Sea will be resolved in accordance with the rules of the international law, the rules enshrined in international law.”
The Australian Defence Force is already carrying out exercises in the disputed area.
The warships have been given a range of training and exercises, including training with Australian Navy warships in the Indian Ocean.
The first ships will arrive on the coast of China on the day of China’s opening ceremony on February 22.
In a joint statement, the three countries said they had signed an agreement on the joint training of warships and other defence-related personnel.
“The first Australian-led multinational exercise will take place in the coming days,” the statement read.
“Following that exercise, we will be conducting a series of drills and exercises together with other relevant nations.”