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Chinese state-run media said Wednesday that Australia’s choice of France to build its next-generation fleet of submarines avoided a “worst-case scenario” by not choosing Japan but issued a warning to U.S. ally Canberra not to upset the shifting security balance in the region.

The editorial, published on the website of the English-language Global Times, slammed the sub deal, which it said would “beef up the U.S. strategic strength in the Western Pacific, negatively affecting China’s strategic security.”

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