Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop (Source: afr.com)

Hanoi (VNA)
– Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has raised objections to China’s militarisation of the East Sea after reports that a Chinese bomber capable of carrying a nuclear warhead had landed in the Paracel archipelago.

Bishop on May 21 held talks with her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the sidelines of the G20 foreign ministers’ meeting in Argentina, ABC News reported.

The Australian minister described the discussion as “very warm and candid and constructive” and said she would shortly visit the Chinese capital of Beijing.

She also affirmed that Australia would “continue to approach our bilateral relationship with goodwill and realism and pragmatism and open communication”.

While the meeting in Argentina was obviously intended to achieve a diplomatic thaw, Bishop confirmed she had raised objections about China’s activities in the East Sea.

Australia’s position has been very clear and consistent and it is very well known to China, she said, adding that Canberra’s concern about militarisation of disputed features in the East Sea has been the subject of a number of discussions.

Bishop also discussed the East Sea issue with the US at the G20 meeting. She said Australia would continue to exercise its rights to freedom of navigation and overflight “and support the rights of others to do so” – and had conveyed that position to China.-VNA