Beijing should abandon its promise not to be the first to use nuclear weapons in a war, in response to the growing alliances in the region against it, according to a former senior diplomat with close ties to the government.
Before leaders of Pacific nations meet in Washington today for a gathering denounced by China as a “mini Nato”, Sha Zukang said its long-standing promise should be revised, because of the US’s growing military presence in East Asia and the new strategic partnerships forming there.
“The unconditional no first use is not suitable . . . unless China-US negotiations agree that neither side would use [nuclear weapons] first, or the US will no longer take any passive measures to undermine the effectiveness of China’s strategic