The Pacific Ocean may have been named for its peaceful winds, but this year’s 18 nation Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) has been among the most combative in its five-decade history. At issue was a confluence of sharply competing interests, with China’s growing role at the centre of them.

China’s delegation stormed out of the meeting after an angry exchange between Nauruan President Baron Waqa and dialogue partner Du Qiwen (China’s Ambassador to Fiji) over whether Du could give a speech on the issue of climate change. Waqa refused China’s request, later saying that it was an attempt by China to "bully" PIF members.