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China's military and economic ambitions are growing in Europe and the Arctic, where the rising communist power may be trying to gain control over important shipping lanes or seaports, according to a top U.S. admiral and Western analysts.

“They're building the first nuclear icebreaker,” The Arctic Institute founder Malte Humpert said.

“That’s going to be the test platform to build nuclear aircraft carriers. It’s all linked together … the Arctic is becoming a geopolitical space.”

Such activities have caught the attention of U.S. diplomats and military leaders, who warn that Chinese Communist officials aspire to project military power in the region.

“With China having its own precedent for making bogus claims over international waterways in the South China Sea, it's possible that China will also seek to bend the rules in their favor in the Arctic,” said Adm. James Foggo, commander of the U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa and Joint Forces Command Naples, during a recent webinar hosted by the International Institute of Strategic Studies.

Most analysts doubt that China would try to claim territorial sovereignty in the Arctic, as it has in the South China Sea, yet that’s not the only way to gain operational control over key territories.

“I just don't think China is really at that spot yet in the Arctic to make territorial claims, but they're certainly trying to make other claims,” the Heritage Foundation’s Luke Coffey said, referring to China’s attempt to gain influence at the Arctic Council.

That intergovernmental organization, which Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited last year, could have an important role in fencing China out of the region. “If the Arctic Council falls apart, and it becomes more of a free-for-all for all the various Arctic states, then, of course, there's an opening for China,” Humpert said.

That scenario would be conducive to China’s desire to use the Belt and Road Initiative, a global overseas investment program, to gain military advantages against the United States and Western allies. Lithuanian officials, for instance, have been resisting China's attempts to secure a controlling stake in a port on the Baltic Sea.

“The Chinese are offering financial relief and opportunities and then using that to influence governments in Europe,” Foggo said. “This type of influence is a security concern, and it could be used to restrict access to key seaports and airport facilities while providing access to sensitive government and military information through the technology of state-owned and state-controlled enterprises.”

Such investments raise the specter of an Arctic nation inviting China’s military to operate in its country, although U.S. influence and the relative wealth of the Arctic states augurs against such a development. Yet Beijing might not even need a territorial foothold, according to Humpert.

“The center of the Arctic Ocean is high seas, so it would have to be some kind of floating military installation,” he said. "It could be a seasonal installation on the ice.”

Or they could try to project power through the kind of platform that has been a mainstay of the U.S. military for decades. “When China will have multiple nuclear aircraft carriers, then it's not unrealistic that they will build one that is ice capable and could potentially be stationed in the Arctic, just as a show of force or to keep tabs on Alaska,” Humpert said.

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Sterilization, Forced Abortion And Mandatory Birth Control: Inside Chinas Xinjiang Province

Adrian Zenz, a senior fellow in China Studies at the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, spoke with the Daily Caller’s Samantha Renck about genocide in China, what the international community is doing and more.

The Chinese Communist Party has come under fire after findings indicate “the Chinese government is committing ‘demographic genocide’ against Uighur Muslims.”

Zenz commented on some of the major takeaways from his report.

“The major finding is that dramatic decline in [the] birthrate and population growth,” Zenz said, “in minority areas in China’s northwestern region of Xinjiang. It’s not only connected to the draconian policy of interning between one and two million adults in internment camps in order to indoctrinate and assimilate them – [but] it is also part and explained through a systematic state campaign of preventing births from taking place.”

Zenz added, “there is a government campaign to suppress birth rates and population growth rates by forcibly inserting intrauterine contraceptive devices into women and through campaigns of mass sterilization.”

“In one Uighur country, government data shows the county planned to sterilize 34 percent of women of reproductive age in one single year – in 2019,” he continued.

Zenz criticized the international community for their inaction regarding the Uighur community, discussed implications for the future and more. (RELATED: TikTok: Is Time Running Out For This App?)

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