The US considers the Atlantic Ocean a critical area for its security, and any permanent Chinese military presence, especially a naval base, is viewed as a significant threat. This has led to a strategic maneuvering between the US and China in Africa, as China aims to establish naval bases on the continent’s western coast while the US tries to persuade African leaders to prevent this from happening.
In Gabon, a charged exchange between Bongo and Feiner has led to the US needing to restart negotiations with the new Gabonese junta. The US and Gabon are currently in discussions for a security cooperation agreement, and the US has invited Gabon to participate in naval exercises aimed at combating piracy and illegal fishing. A similar situation has occurred in Equatorial Guinea, with the US flagging Chinese efforts to establish a base.
The Chinese navy has been active in international waters and has built commercial ports in various African countries. However, only Djibouti serves as a permanent base for Chinese ships and troops. The US is closely monitoring these developments and is focused on finding ways to thwart China’s military ambitions in Africa, as it is considered a matter of tremendous security urgency.
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