Beijing: Faced with a stiff challenge from Washington to its designs in the Indo-Pacific region, Beijing is now trying to misguide the world by making false claims about the success of its initiatives in the Indo-Pacific region.

The cause for the apprehension of Beijing is not difficult to understand as the European Union has also come up with an Indo - Pacific strategy that aims to enhance its engagement across a wide spectrum. The EU sees itself and the Indo-Pacific as "natural partner regions."

To check the aggressive moves by China and ensure a free and open Indo - Pacific, the USA and the European Union are putting their acts together. Anxious to defend democracy around the world, the USA has taken steps to prevent Beijing from imposing its own authoritarian model around the globe.

Clearly, in the face of shifting of attention by major world powers from other areas of conflict to the Indian and Pacific Oceans to meet the threat of Chinese belligerence in the South China Sea and attempts to establish its hegemony over the entire seawater, Beijing is unnerved. With Beijing defying the laid down U.N. conventions and international maritime laws, powerful nations are getting together to form the basis for a deeper integration in future and ensure equal access to global commons for all countries as a right under the international law, The Singapore post reported.

Notably, these dire steps may be the result of China's financial support across the Pacific region being on the decline. From its peak of USD 287 million, it now fell to USD 187 million in 2020. This is the lowest ever since 2008. According to the Singapore Post, a South East Asia news outlet reported.

Beijing in November last year had claimed that representatives of 19 countries had actually attended Indian Ocean Forum on Development Cooperation on November 21 held at the Kunming in the Yunnan province of China an organization that has been connected with the foreign ministry of China, according to The Singapore Post.

Maldives and Australia denied in quick succession Beijing's claim that they participated in a meeting of the China - Indian Ocean Forum on Development Cooperation on November 21, 2022 thus reflecting China's losing grip on the Indian Ocean region.

The attending countries of these meets according to China were Indonesia, Pakistan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Maldives, Nepal, Afghanistan, Iran, Oman, South Africa, Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania, Seychelles, Madagascar, Mauritius, Djibouti and Australia.

Although the countries that were amongst the attendees of the development cooperation meet by China were Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Kenya and Djibouti and Nepal are beholden to Beijing because of Belt and Road Initiative loans and the oppressive military junta in Myanmar and the obscurantist Taliban regime in Afghanistan are dependent on China's support to stay in power.

Although contrary to the claims made by China in regard to the matter. Maldives denied attending the meeting. Later Australia too had clarified the same. The Singapore post further mentions that Sydney made these clarifications highlighting that they had not participated despite having an invitation. Similarly, India also refrained from participating in the meet anyhow.

The Singapore post quoted the Maldives Ministry of Foreign Affairs statement. The statement mentioned, "The Ministry would like to clarify that the Government of the Maldives did not participate in the Forum mentioned above and communicated its decision not to participate in the meeting to the Embassy of the People's Republic of China to the Maldives on November 15, 2022,". This clearly countered the claims made by China regarding the matter.

The Singapore post also quoted Australian High Commissioner to India Barry O'Farrell who had tweeted that "Contrary to media reporting, no Australian government official attended the Kunming China-India Ocean Forum on Development Cooperation,".

The Singapore post mentions citing the US's long-delayed National Security Strategy that emphasized the importance of working with allies to tackle challenges confronting democratic nations and seeking to contain China. In the policy preamble, Joe Biden said "Autocrats are working overtime to undermine democracy and export a model of governance marked by repression at home and coercion abroad. These competitors mistakenly believe democracy is weaker than autocracy because they fail to understand that a nation's power springs from its people."

Considering the security strategy, the US decided to deploy up to six nuclear-capable B-52 bombers in northern Australia. Preparations are underway to build dedicated facilities for the long-range bombers at the Royal Australian Air Force Base Tindal. The US Marines already have a presence in Australia, according to the Singapore post report.