The minister rejected the concerns of the Western camp, in particular of Australia and the United States which fear that this agreement will allow Beijing to install a military presence in the archipelago. The pact is “irreproachable, honest and with integrity”, he said.

Wang on Thursday began a tour of several South Pacific countries in Honiara, capital of the Solomon Islands, where he will discuss a major initiative to expand security and free trade cooperation in the region.

A draft agreement that AFP was able to consult, but whose final version has not been published, contained a provision authorizing the deployment of Chinese naval forces on the island, which is less than 2,000 kilometers from the island. ‘Australia.

This agreement “is not imposed on anyone, it is not aimed at any third party, there is no intention at all to establish a military base”, Wang said at a press conference after meeting his Solomon Islands counterpart, Jeremiah Manele.

The former Australian government, which lost the elections on May 21, warned that the construction of a military base was a “red line”, without specifying the consequences of crossing.

The Chinese diplomat asked not to “interfere” or “disrupt” China’s “cooperation with Pacific island countries”.

“They are no one’s backyard. All Pacific Island countries have the right to make their own choice instead of just following others,” the foreign minister said through a translator.

The security pact should help the Solomon Islands government preserve long-term stability and security, he said, “in light of Solomon Islands’ needs and demands.”

In November, protests against Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare escalated into riots in the capital, with widespread vandalism in Chinatown.

The unrest has “seriously threatened the life and property of the Chinese community in this country”, Wang said.