WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday mentioned he would focus on navy developments along with his counterparts from China and Russia sooner or later, within the hopes of ending what he described as an arms race with the international locations.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks throughout a gathering with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina December 1, 2018. REUTERS/Luisa Gonzalez

“I’m sure that, at a while sooner or later, President Xi and I, along with President Putin of Russia, will begin speaking a few significant halt to what has grow to be a serious and uncontrollable Arms Race. The U.S. spent 716 Billion {Dollars} this yr. Loopy!” Trump wrote in a tweet, the day after he returned from the Group of 20 assembly in Argentina.

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Trump didn’t present additional particulars. He signed a $716 billion protection coverage invoice in August that licensed navy spending, strengthened guidelines to restrict Chinese language funding in U.S. know-how corporations and elevated spending on missile defenses.

Requested about Trump’s tweet, Chinese language International Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang mentioned China was dedicated to the trail of peace.

“We’ve by no means participated in any sort of arms race and don’t represent a risk to any nation,” he informed a each day information briefing.

The U.S. navy this yr put countering China and Russia on the heart of a brand new nationwide protection technique, and can withdraw troops from different elements of the world to assist the altering priorities.

On the identical time, Washington has publicly mentioned quitting a landmark nuclear arms management pact with Russia that has been in place since 1987.

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Moscow has warned Washington it will likely be pressured to reply in sort to revive the navy steadiness if Trump carries by way of along with his risk to give up the INF treaty, a 1987 settlement that eradicated all short- and intermediate-range land-based nuclear and traditional missiles held by each international locations in Europe.

With out the treaty, some European international locations worry that Washington would possibly deploy intermediate-range nuclear missiles in Europe once more and that Russia would possibly transfer to deploy such missiles in its exclave of Kaliningrad, which might as soon as once more flip Europe into a possible nuclear battlefield.

In March, China introduced an 8.1 % rise in protection spending, the most important rise in three years, fueling an formidable navy modernization program and making its neighbors, significantly Japan and Taiwan, nervous.

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Chinese language state media has described the rise as proportionate and low, and mentioned that Beijing has not been goaded into an arms race with america. It rejected “finger-pointing from the standard suspects.”

It mentioned China’s protection funds was neither the biggest in measurement, accounting for simply one-fourth of the navy spending of america, nor the quickest rising. However Beijing’s spending determine is carefully watched worldwide for clues to China’s strategic intentions because it develops new navy capabilities, together with stealth fighters, plane carriers and anti-satellite missiles.

Reporting by Lisa Lambert and David Brunnstrom; Extra reporting by Ben Blanchard in Beijing; Modifying by Susan Thomas and Clarence Fernandez

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