Alaska Waters – China and Russia Patrol Raises Concerns

( – Warships from China and Russia recently patrolled waters near Alaska but did not enter U.S. territory during their patrols. Retired Navy captain Brent Sadler called the warship movement provocative and claimed that the patrols marked a historic first in international tensions.

The patrol comes amid Russia’s ongoing war with Ukraine and China’s repeated threats of invading Taiwan, two global conflicts the United States has indirectly aided their opponents in. State officials from Russia and China have yet to comment on the purpose of the patrol or how many ships took part in the exercise.

Still, United States military officials have confirmed that the patrols occurred near the Aleutian Islands and that military boats from the United States shadowed the warships during the incident. Russian officials confirmed that the two countries recently began joint military exercises and ran drills near the Bering Sea and Japan. Officials from both countries attempted to lighten the tension caused by the patrol by claiming the drills and patrols weren’t aimed at any country in particular, like the United States, but were an effort to test military preparedness between the nations.

While China and Russia are allies in economic and supply-related industries, they aren’t allies in the ongoing armed conflict Russia is currently involved in. China attended the peace talks held in Saudi Arabia, which focused on the continuing conflict in Ukraine and potential resolutions. After attending the international peace talks, Chinese official Wang Yi reassured Russia that China remains impartial regarding the Russian invasion of Ukraine. China supplied Russia with arms months ago to aid in the conflict but hasn’t involved its military forces directly.

While Russia and China historically agree with one another’s policies regarding conflicts and Western influence, China uses Russia as a source of raw resources, according to Pavlo Riabikin, the Ukrainian ambassador to Beijing. Riabikin likely aims to highlight that China doesn’t require Russian aid for resources in order to discourage Chinese officials from getting involved with Russia’s ongoing invasion. While China has only supplied Russia with arms so far, the Russian conflict in Ukraine will likely press on for the foreseeable future.

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