Australia is considering joint naval patrols with Indonesia in the contested South China Sea, the Australian foreign minister, Julie Bishop confirmed on Tuesday.
Bishop said Indonesia’s request for joint patrols at a bilateral meeting in Bali last week was “consistent with our policies of exercising our right of freedom of navigation”.
“That’s in accordance with international law and our support for peace and stability in the region,” Bishop told ABC radio.
Australia has previously drawn criticism from China for running surveillance flights over disputed islands in the South China Sea and supporting US freedom of navigation exercises there.
China, which claims almost the entire South China Sea, last month urged Australia to “speak and act cautiously” on the issue.
Leave a Reply