Peter Dutton lashes out at Russia and China amid concerns of invasion
Defence Minister Peter Dutton has issued a warning to “bully” nations as he prepares to meet with his UK counterpart.
Amid growing concerns of China’s rise in the Indo-Pacific, Mr Dutton and Foreign Minister Marise Payne are set to discuss increasing defence ties at a meeting of AUKMIN on Friday.
Speaking on Sunrise, Mr Dutton said the UK-Australia relationship was critical to the region.
“If we can bring strong friends together, I think we deter bullies and people who might seek to do harm to a country,” the Defence Minister said.
“The UK’s family as we know, and they are a reliable partner. We have fought alongside them for generations.”
But long-awaited talks are set to be overshadowed by the threat of war in the Ukraine.
Asked about the heightened tensions at the Ukraine border, Mr Dutton lashed out at Russia.
“It impacts the whole world when you see Russia act the way they do, it encourages other police and other dictatorships to do the same,’ Mr Dutton said.
“Particularly if there is no pushback from the rest of the world. As we are seeing with European leaders, they are pushing back.
“We are meeting today with my counterpart from the UK and the Foreign Secretary, and they are working very hard with the rest of NATO and the rest of the European Community to try and put pressure on Russia to stop any incursion into the Ukraine.”
On Thursday, the Defence Minister said Australia was on standby to support the UK in deterring aggressive behaviour.
Originally published as Peter Dutton lashes out at Russia and China amid concerns of invasion
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