Chagos silence undermines rules-based system

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By Benjamin Herscovitch*

Australia’s defence of the rules-based international order is based on enlightened self-interest. As the 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper made plain: “We will act on the principle that Australia will be safer and more prosperous in a global order based on agreed rules rather than one based on the exercise of power alone.”

Yet in the case of decolonisation of the Chagos Archipelago in the Indian Ocean – a UK-administered territory also home to a major US military base at Diego Garcia – Australia seems to have disregarded its own interest in defending the rules and laws governing the globe.

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