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International relations

Australia and New Zealand tout Indo-Pacific ties, reject 'coercion'

At summit, neighbors raise China human rights while sidestepping differences

SYDNEY -- The prime ministers of Australia and New Zealand on Monday presented a united front against hardball trade diplomacy and for human rights, while promising the Indo-Pacific region more assistance with COVID-19.

"The prime ministers affirmed their strong support for open rules-based trade that is based on market principles," Australia's Scott Morrison and New Zealand's Jacinda Ardern said in a joint statement wrapping up their annual leaders' dialogue.

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