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Strategic chokepoints: the new U.S.-China battlegrounds

Washington wary of Beijing's advances in Solomon Islands, Panama Canal

China has stepped up activity in strategic chokepoints like Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands, the Panama Canal and Ushuaia, Argentina. (Source photo by Reuters)

TOKYO -- Kurt Campbell, the Indo-Pacific coordinator on the U.S. National Security Council, did not mince his words on a visit last week to Honiara, the capital of the Solomon Islands.

If China takes steps to establish a de facto permanent military presence, power projection capabilities, or a military installation in the Solomon Islands, "the United States would then have significant concerns and respond accordingly," his delegation told Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare and two dozen members of the Pacific nation's cabinet and senior staff, according to a White House readout.

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