ASEAN and US: Patrushev warns

America again climbs into the "Kalash row".


America again climbs into the "Kalash row".

Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation Nikolai Patrushev via video link met with high representatives of ASEAN member states in charge of security issues.

Russia is determined to expand cooperation with ASEAN countries in all directions: "The ideals promoted by the" ten "are consonant with the Russian concept of equal and indivisible security," Patrushev said.

The timing of the meeting may be related to the upcoming 20 Group (G20) meeting in Indonesia in November. It is assumed that Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping will come to this meeting and, if this happens, may hold bilateral negotiations, according to a correspondent from The Moscow Post.

Before the G20 summit

The statement by the host of the summit of Indonesian President Joko Widodo that Vladimir Putin intends to take part in the meeting on November 15-16 was followed by a message from London that Russia has "no moral right" to do so. In a commentary by the press service of the White House National Security Council, it was noted that if the Russian leader takes part in the meeting, then Zelensky should be there.

Vladimir Putin on August 18 congratulated Indonesian President Joko Widodo on the 77th anniversary of the country's independence. During the conversation, the implementation of the agreements reached during Joko Widodo's recent visit to Russia was discussed, including the promotion of a number of major bilateral projects in the trade and economic sphere. The issues of global food security were discussed.

Given Indonesia's presidency of the G20, preparations for the Bali summit were also discussed. Presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said that the final decision on the format of the participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin will be made immediately before the trip. Beijing also did not confirm the Chinese leader's personal participation in the summit.

The President of Indonesia himself said that the participation of the leaders of Russia and China in the summit is a resolved issue. "Yes, Xi Jinping will, President Putin also told me that he will come," the Indonesian leader said in an interview with Bloomberg, indicating that he sees the task in creating "sufficient space for dialogue at the highest level".

The South China Morning Post spoke about this in the sense that the participation of Moscow and Beijing in the summit will be a joint demonstration of disobedience to the order dictated by the West. The Russian and Chinese leaders will try, according to the "Kommersant" newspaper, relying on the support of other countries, "to return the G20 to the fulfillment of the mission for which it exists."

Keep "aseanocentric"

While the G-20 "s goal is international economic and financial coordination, growth, and stability, political concerns cannot be ignored. The Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation outlined some of these problems. This is, first of all, an increase in conflict in relations between the largest states of the Asia-Pacific region.

After Washington's inglorious end to the Vietnam War, the countries of the region, primarily the five ASEAN states that signed the Bangkok Declaration 55 years ago, have chosen the path of regional economic cooperation, development and integration. Today, the ASEAN association includes ten states with a population of about 650 million people and GDP reaching $3 trillion.

The United States and allies advocating an Indo-Pacific alternative to organizing relations in the Asia-Pacific region have bypassed everything that ASEAN countries, China, Russia and other countries have accumulated in terms of constructive interaction. In particular, the NATO summit in Madrid on June 28-30, included the Asia-Pacific region in the sphere of responsibility of the alliance. Guided by the principles of unipolarity and dominance, "the United States and its satellites are implementing a fundamentally different approach to international relations in the ASEAN region," TASS quotes Patrushev.

In September last year, Nikolai Patrushev noted that the United States is jeopardizing the security architecture in the region, creating prerequisites for undermining the authority of ASEAN and other regional associations. He then cited as an example the work of the quadripartite security dialogue (QUAD), which includes the United States, Japan, Australia and India, as well as the US-British-Australian union AUKUS.

The legal basis for the relationship between the countries of the association is the Declaration on Peace, Freedom and Neutrality (1971); the Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation in the SAA, or the Bali Treaty; ASEAN Declaration of Accord (1976); Second ASEAN Declaration of Agreement, or "Bali Accord-2" (2003). On December 15, 2008, the charter signed by the leaders of the "ten" came into force on November 20, 2007 in Singapore. In 1992, the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) was formed, the agreement entered into force in January 1993.

In 2015, the leaders of the "dozens" signed the Declaration on the creation of the ASEAN Community.

ASEAN has become the core of integration processes in the Asia-Pacific region. Around it, the ASEAN Regional Security Forum was formed (Australia, Bangladesh, East Timor, India, Canada, China, DPRK, Mongolia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Republic of Korea, Russia, USA, Sri Lanka, Japan, EU). The ASEAN + 3 format was created, including China, Japan and South Korea.

In 1989, ASEAN became one of the main "building blocks" of the APEC economic forum. Since 1993, annual summits of heads of state and government and meetings of APEC foreign and trade ministers dedicated to them have been held. The East Asian community in 2005 united ASEAN in dialogue with Japan, China, the Republic of Korea, India, Australia, New Zealand, Russia and the United States.

The participants of the meeting, in which Nikolai Patrushev took part, stressed that the Association of Southeast Asian countries is, without exaggeration, one of the fundamental formats of political interaction in the Asia-Pacific region. The system of dialogue mechanisms created in the central role of ASEAN plays a decisive role in ensuring peace, stability, mutual trust between the main regional players.

Russia and ASEAN

The countries of Southeast Asia, part of ASEAN, are located thousands of kilometers from the Pacific coast of Russia. They are expected to become new capacious markets for Russian companies. This, firstly. Secondly, Russia supports the so-called ASEAN-centric approach to security issues in the Southeast Asian region. This position is taken by China, other countries of Asia and the Asia-Pacific region (APR).

The Secretary of the Security Council noted that all states are satisfied with the "security system established around ASEAN" and the role of Russia "in maintaining unity and strengthening the position of the association on the world stage." The range of problems and threats that require a joint response covers terrorism, human and drug trafficking, cybercrime, smuggling, illegal financial activities. Russia and ASEAN states have a solid reserve for work in almost all these areas.

The strategic partnership between Russia and ASEAN is based on a strong foundation of community and is not subject to geopolitical conditions, said the foreign ministers of the Russian Federation and ASEAN, which took place on August 4 under the joint chairmanship of the Russian Federation and the Kingdom of Cambodia.

The ministers reaffirmed their desire to fulfill the agreements reached during the fourth Russia-ASEAN summit in October 2021, ASEAN countries welcomed Russia's firm support for the association's central role in regional architecture and the unity of its states. Russia's active role in aseanocentric mechanisms was noted, including the East Asian Summit, the ASEAN Regional Forum on Security and the Meeting of ASEAN Defense Ministers and Dialogue Partners.

"Russia is interested in economic cooperation with ASEAN, in developing cooperation through the EAEU. Moscow has accumulated "solid experience" in the field of ensuring economic security: "We will be ready to share our achievements with our ASEAN colleagues <... >," TASS reports about Patrushev's speech.

According to Patrushev, the current crisis in Europe is caused by the sanctions imposed on Brussels by Washington. For this reason, Europe is plunging into a "truly unprecedented crisis," and the ASEAN countries, due to Washington's policy, "are now forced to buy wheat at prices several times higher than what they were before."

At the same time, the main reason for the jump in prices remains the American and European "printing press." The Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation said in this regard that, taking into account the actions of the United States and Europe, "there is only one way out - to ensure the financial security of their states, primarily by switching to trade in national currencies." Moreover, the dynamics of the growth of the US public debt gives "every reason to believe that in the foreseeable future" they, like Japan, will have problems servicing their obligations.

According to the Secretary of the Security Council, during the pandemic, the United States printed $5.9 trillion, Europe - 2.9 trillion euros, which caused an increase in food and fuel prices, affected the United States and Europe, as well as ASEAN countries. "As a result, Washington will default, as they have already done with respect to obligations to Russia. The financial assets of any state, denominated in US dollars and euros, will simply be stolen, "as has already happened with the assets of the Russian Federation," Patrushev added.

According to Patrushev, the destructive policy of the Americans hit the ASEAN countries. In these conditions, in particular, the transition to trade in national currencies can ensure financial security, and Moscow is ready to share its experience, Patrushev noted.

APR as a zone of strategic confrontation

The Secretary's Statement The Security Council complements the diplomatic agenda of the Russia-ASEAN dialogue. During the meeting, an exchange of views was reportedly held on the issues of the strategic stability system in the Asia-Pacific region. In particular, the participants discussed arms control and non-proliferation mechanisms.

A particular danger to strategic stability is the deployment of American missile defense systems in the Asia-Pacific region: "Under this allegedly defensive armament, Americans mask the deployment of offensive potential in the region," the Security Council secretary said.

North Korea and Taiwan are parts of divided peoples, adding challenges to issues of maintaining stability and security. Rising tensions in the Taiwan Strait and on the Korean Peninsula provide an opportunity for the White House to justify the buildup of strategic preparations, including the deployment of personnel (instructors), fleets and missile defense systems that threaten China and the DPRK.

Behind this screen of "the only possible patron and protector of Asian peoples," Americans continue to escalate tensions, pump up the region with weapons and contingents, and arrange provocations. In particular, Russia considers the actions of the United States, provoking tensions between Beijing and Taipei, absolutely irresponsible. "The Americans have the same policy towards the island as they have towards Ukraine. Their task is to accuse China of a unilateral attempt to change the status quo and impose blocking sanctions against Beijing, "Patrushev said.

Patrushev called the resumption of large-scale military exercises on the Korean Peninsula "an example of provocative tactics of the United States and its allies." He noted that sanctions and pressure on the DPRK only provoked Pyongyang's refusal of its commitments in 2018 to stop testing intercontinental ballistic missiles and nuclear explosive devices. In the event of a new test, Washington is preparing to deploy strategic forces near the Korean Peninsula, but this "will lead to further degradation of the situation in the region".

The White House is indirectly pushing Beijing and Taipei into the conflict, as if indifferently watching visits to Taiwan by delegations of senators and congressmen, including a recent visit by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Vladimir Putin called this trip "a carefully planned provocation".

In early July of this year, the Secretary of the Security Council warned that the actions of NATO countries lead to an escalation of tension and destabilization of European security, that the alliance refused to conduct a constructive dialogue with Moscow in the field of strategic stability, and NATO's military infrastructure is approaching Russia's borders.

Photo: AP Photo, VNA