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US-China tensions

US and Australia propose 'network of alliances' to curb China

Five Eyes, Quad and ASEAN tapped as guardians of Indo-Pacific security

From right, U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne and Australian Defense Minister Linda Reynolds take part in a joint news conference at the State Department on July 28. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. State Department)

NEW YORK -- In a move likely to irk Beijing, the U.S. and Australia look to strengthen the web of regional alliances and partnerships to maintain a rules-based Indo-Pacific.

The topic of China dominated the "two plus two" dialogue, where U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Mark Esper hosted Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne and Defense Minister Linda Reynolds. Their two-day gathering in Washington, which ended Tuesday, was the 30th edition of the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations, or AUSMIN.

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