Australian PM dismisses reports of Chinese military base talks with Vanuatu

Australian PM dismisses reports of Chinese military base talks with Vanuatu, by Steve George.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said Australia would view “with great concern” any foreign military bases being built in the South Pacific, following reports Beijing was in talks with Vanuatu to host Chinese forces. …

The small island nation of about 282,000 people sits in the South Pacific, close to Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea. Any Chinese military presence could see warships based less than 2,500 kilometers (1,553 miles) from Australia’s coast.

It has long been a large recipient of Australian government aid, but in recent years has received hundreds of millions of dollars in loans and grants from the Chinese government.

hat-tip Scott of the Pacific