L’escalade en Asie ?

NEW DELHI – Les disputes territoriales et maritimes qui couvent depuis la période de la guerre froide sur le continent asiatique mettent en lumière le fait que le respect des frontières existantes est essentiel pour pérenniser la paix à long terme dans l’ensemble d’une région. Les tentatives consistant à perturber le statu quo territorial asiatique sont autant d’invitations à des conflits endémiques – une inquiétude qui a amené les états asiatiques à accueillir les Etats-Unis et la Russie à leur Sommet est-asiatique annuel.

Le récent litige diplomatique à propos des îles disputées en mer de Chine méridionale – suivi, quasi instantanément, de l’épisode sino-vietnamien au sujet d’atolls similaires – a clairement révélé la politique régionale de la Chine. Les gouvernements asiatiques dans leur ensemble s’inquiètent de ce que la puissance grandissante de la Chine ne l’encourage à des prétentions territoriales et maritimes contre ses voisins, du Japon jusqu’en Inde. Et ceci concerne même le tout petit Bhoutan où la Chine a effectué des incursions militaires sous prétextes de prétentions territoriales.

La nouvelle agressivité de la Chine souligne le défi diplomatique central de l’Asie : s’accommoder des frontières existantes en se délestant du bagage de l’histoire qui pèse lourdement sur l’ensemble des principales relations inter-état de la région. Plus l’Asie devient économiquement interdépendante, plus elle devient politiquement divisée.  

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