NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the military bloc needed to “strengthen” its strategy on countering the rise of China. Beijing doesn’t share the values of the NATO members, he added.

“China’s military buildup, growing influence, and coercive behavior poses challenges to our security. We need to address them together as an alliance,” Stoltenberg told reporters ahead of a NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium, on Monday.

At the same time, Stoltenberg said that NATO members still needed to work with Beijing on issues such as climate change and arms control.

The NATO chief made a similar point in an interview with Canadian TV channel CBC on Sunday.

“China does not share our values,” he said, referring to the crackdown on protest in Hong Kong and “how they oppress minorities like the Uighurs.”

All of this makes it important for NATO to develop a policy, to strengthen our policy, when it comes to China.

Stoltenberg said that the continuing detention of Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig in China is “absolutely unacceptable.” The two men were arrested in 2018 and charged with espionage. Canada demanded that its nationals be released, while Beijing accused Ottawa of interfering in its domestic affairs. (RT)