James Byrne, Joe Byrne, Gary Somerville and Hamish Macdonald
A large fleet of North Korean cargo ships continues to deliver coal to China in contravention of UN Security Council resolutions, in what appears to be a large-scale, coordinated effort to evade sanctions imposed on the country over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes.
A British naval presence in the South China Sea strengthens global security and Britain’s global role. But it must be matched with a more systematic approach to the region, and to China’s defiance of legal norms.
A clear differentiation is required between trade and technology wars, Huawei and politicised arrests of foreign nationals. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is deliberately confusing them, and President Trump is not helping.
Taiwan has had industrial financial viability problems with the construction of new minehunting vessels. These problems are indicative of the difficulties Taipei faces in its indigenous military modernisation efforts aimed at ameliorating its military inferiority vis-à-vis China.
Pictures of what appears to be a test installation of a naval railgun on a PLA Navy landing ship suggest China is moving forward with sea trials of a weapon which can threaten all Western surface assets. At the start of a huge ship-building plan, China is ideally placed to capitalise on this technology.