HONOLULU - With the United States facing a multipronged challenge from China, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declared on Thursday that the 21st century will be "America's Pacific century" and said the region's problems require US leadership.
While stressing that the Obama administration will seek improved ties with China, Clinton used a speech ahead of an Asia-Pacific summit here to dissuade Beijing and others from thinking the United States is ceding its traditional role in the Pacific.
"There are challenges facing the Asia-Pacific right now that demand America's leadership, from ensuring freedom of navigation in the South China Sea to countering North Korea's provocations and proliferation activities to promoting balanced and inclusive economic growth," she said.
Clinton's remarks, in a speech at the East-West Center, were part of a campaign by President Barack Obama to "pivot" US foreign policy to focus more intensely on Asia after a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
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