BEIJING, April 20 -- The United States should stop its hypocritical practice of expanding unilateral military superiority in the name of arms control, and truly assume its due responsibility as a major country to safeguard the long-term peace and security in outer space, a Chinese spokesperson said on Tuesday.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin made the remarks at a daily press briefing when being asked to comment on a US statement, which said that prohibiting direct-ascent anti-satellite missile testing should become an international norm, and criticized China and Russia for conducting anti-satellite tests.
Wang pointed out that the US has long pursued a strategy for dominance in space and openly defined outer space as a war-fighting domain. To this end, it has made vigorous efforts to develop and deploy a variety of offensive outer space weapons such as directed energy and Counter Communications System, and comprehensively advanced military buildup and preparedness in outer space.
"The US was the first country to carry out direct-ascent anti-satellite missile test and has so far conducted the largest number of such tests. Now, the US announced that it would bar tests of ground-based direct-ascent anti-satellite weapons. But why not announce that it will not use such weapons? Why not stop testing air-based, co-orbital and other types of anti-satellite weapons, and stop anti-missile tests of anti-satellite nature? Why not commit itself to banning the use of force against outer space objects?" said Wang.
Wang stressed that China advocates peaceful use of outer space, opposes weaponization of and arms race in space, and calls for the building of a community with a shared future in outer space. Dating back to as early as 2008, China and Russia jointly submitted a draft treaty on arms control in outer space to the Conference on Disarmament, which explicitly prohibits the placement of weapons in outer space and the threat or use of force against outer space objects. The draft treaty aims to eradicate threats to outer space security in a legally-binding package approach, including anti-satellite missile testing, so as to fundamentally safeguard peace and security in outer space. However, this proposal has long been opposed by the US side.
"We hope the US will truly assume its due responsibility as a major country, fully reflect upon its negative moves in the field of outer space, stop the hypocritical practice of expanding unilateral military superiority in the name of arms control, stop obstructing the negotiation process of the legal instrument on outer space arms control and play its due role in safeguarding the long-term peace and security in outer space," noted Wang.