La Jornada newspaper
Monday, November 22, 2021, p. 32

Sidney. Australia formally joined a program with the United States and the United Kingdom on Monday that will allow it to equip itself with nuclear submarines, in a defense alliance that aroused the ire of France and China.

Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton signed with diplomatic representatives from Washington and London the agreement for the exchange of information on naval nuclear propulsion between their countries.

This is the first publicly signed agreement on that technology since the three countries formed the alliance known as Aukus in September, aimed at tackling strategic tensions in the Pacific, where the rivalry between China and the United States is growing.

The agreement will allow cooperation that will improve our mutual defense posture, declared the US president, Joe Biden, last Friday, before the signing in Canberra by the charge d’affaires of his country, Michael Goldman, and the British diplomat Victoria Treadell. .

Under the Aukus deal, Australia will get eight nuclear submarines capable of long-range missions, and plans to share artificial intelligence and other non-detailed underwater capabilities.

The pact angered China, calling it an extremely irresponsible threat to stability in the Pacific.

It also angered France, which learned at the last minute that Australia had backed off a deal to buy French diesel-powered submarines in favor of US nuclear vessels.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has defended the pact, noting that it responds to the interests of his country.