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China Sea

South China Sea Boils Up

Photo: Council on Foreign Relations

 The overlapping territorial disputes in the South China Sea involve China, Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan, the Philippines and Vietnam have recently been moving from bad to worse.   Vietnam is seeking to upgrade its air defences by acquiring western fighter jets and drones, a move which would further militarize a dispute with Beijing over territorial claims in the South China Sea.   Taiwan's coast guard has commissioned its biggest ships for duty in the form of two 3,000-ton patrol vessels, as the island boosts defenses amid concerns about China's growing footprint in the disputed South China Sea, says a report in the Reuters.   The new vessels will be able to dock at a new port being constructed on Taiping Island, the largest of the naturally occurring Spratly Islands in the South China Sea, before the end of this year.   In a troubling sign that tensions continue to grow over the contested South China Sea, the Philippine government is claiming a Chinese warship has opened fire, with warning shots directed at one of its fishing boats in the area.   The development follows a war of words between the two nations after the Philippine president, Benigno Aquino, this week likened China's behaviour to that of Nazi Germany in the lead-up to World War II.   A Chinese coast guard vessel has been accused of encroaching on Malaysia's territorial waters in the South China Sea.   


China Criticizes US over Maritime Patrol Proposal in South China Sea

Vice Adm. Robert Thomas, commander of U.S. 7th Fleet: US Navy Photo

 China asked the United States to take no position on the South China Sea issue after US Navy Officer Robert Thomas promised to back the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in patrolling areas of the waterway.   "We hope the United States will strictly honor its commitment of not taking positions or sides on territorial sovereignty issues," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei.  


Indonesia Says It Has No Conflict with China in South China Sea

Indonesia has no conflict with China over the South China Sea, an Indonesian palace spokesman said on Wednesday, days after eight Chinese crew members were detained for allegedly fishing illegally in the Natuna Sea.   "There is no conflict between Indonesia and China related to the South China Sea," said presidential spokesman Johan Budi told reporters. "This is purely the enforcement of law by Indonesia, and we have already conveyed our letter of protest."  


Taiwan Offers South China Sea Peace Plan

Taiwan proposed a peace initiative on Tuesday to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea that it says will reduce tensions that have put Beijing at odds with its neighbours and the United States. The South China Sea Peace Initiative announced by President Ma Ying-jeou called on claimants to temporarily shelve their disagreements to enable negotiations on sharing resources. Ma's plan is similar to a 2012 proposal for the East China Sea


U.S. Will Dispatch Warships to South China Sea

The United States is expected to sail warships close to China's artificial islands in the South China Sea within the next two weeks to signal it does not recognize Chinese territorial claims over the area, the Financial Times reported, citing a senior U.S. official. The ships will sail within the 12-nautical-mile zones that China claims as territory around some of the islands it has constructed in the Spratly chain, the report said.


CNOOC Pairs with Husky to Explore Deep Water Oil

CNOOC Ltd.’s unlisted parent company plans to start deep water oil and gas exploration in the South China Sea with Canada's Husky Energy Inc. next year, according to AP report. If the scheduled exploration finds sizable reserves in a bloc in the South China Sea about 185 miles south of Hong Kong, it will be China's first deep water oil and gas field. CNOOC's parent company is currently restricted to pumping oil and gas offshore at no deeper than 350 m


Beijing Angry over ASEAN Chief's Comments on South China Sea

South China Sea (International Affairs, Diplomacy and Strategy, London School of Economics)

 China has expressed anger at remarks made by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) secretary general Le Luong Minh on the disputed South China Sea, , rejecting Chinese claims based on the so-called nine-dash line.   The Chinese government criticized Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretary General Le Loung Minh over the latter’s remarks on the issue in the South China Sea, particularly on the contested “nine-dash-line” claim. 


Asean Raps Chinese Sea Aggression

Photo by Asean

Southeast Asian foreign ministers have expressed concern at Chinese land reclamation in the disputed South China Sea, as the Philippines urged them to stand up to Beijing, reports AFP.  The statement came after Manila warned fellow members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) at a ministers' retreat in Malaysia that the 10-country grouping's credibility was at stake unless it dealt strongly with the "critical issue in our own backyard".  


Australia Backs US in South China Sea

 Though Australia is not involved in the United States’ current naval activity in the South China Sea, the country strongly supports the policy of freedom of navigation, said Defense Minister Marise Payne.   On Tuesday, the U.S. Navy sent its guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen within 12 nautical miles of two Chinese-built islands Subi and Mischief in the South China Sea, openly challenging China's territorial claims in the area.  


U.S. Navy Chief: South China Sea Arms Race could Develop

The U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander has warned of a possible arms race in the disputed South China Sea which could engulf the region, as nations become increasingly tempted to use military force to settle territorial spats instead of international law. Commander Admiral Scott Swift urged nations, like China, to seek arbitration to settle maritime disputes. "My concern is that after many decades of peace and prosperity


China to "Pressure" U.S. on Maritime Issues

China will "pressure" the United States on maritime issues at talks in Beijing next week because of Chinese concern about an increased U.S. military presence in the disputed South China Sea, a major state-run newspaper said on Tuesday.


This Day In Naval History: May 26

1943 - USS Saury (SS 189) attacks a Japanese convoy south of Kyushu and sinks transport Kagi Maru, about 10 miles north of the Nansei Shoto. Also on this date, USS Whale (SS 239) sinks Japanese gunboat Shoei Maru (which is transporting men of the Guam Base Detachment) about 17 miles


Aquino: China Breaks South China Sea Deal

Philippine President Benigno Aquino on Thursday accused China of breaking a U.S.-brokered deal between the two nations on the Scarborough Shoal, an uninhabited rocky outcrop in the South China Sea. China claims almost the entire South China Sea, believed to have rich deposits of oil and gas


G7 Meeting to Tackle Sea Row in Asia Pacific

Photo: Public Relations Office, Cabinet Office and Office of Global Communications, Japan

 Group of Seven (G7) leaders will call for respect for the rule of law and peaceful resolution to conflicts in a joint statement to be issued Friday at the end of their two-day summit, taking a swipe against China's territorial ambitions in the South China Sea, reports Nikkei.  


Japan, Canada Share "Serious Concerns" on South China Sea-PM Abe

Japan and Canada share "serious concerns" over reclamation and militarisation in the South China Sea, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Tuesday, in an apparent reference to China's maritime activity.   China and the United States have traded accusations of militarising


This Day In Naval History: May 17

USS Roark (FF-1053). U.S. Navy photo by PHAN Burgess

1942 - USS Tautog (SS 199) sinks Japanese submarine I-28; USS Triton (SS 201) sinks the Japanese submarine (I 64), and USS Skipjack (SS 184) sinks a Japanese army transport ship.   1943 - Destroyers USS Moffett (DD 362) and USS Jouett (DD 396) sink German submarine U 128


Philippines Detains 25 Chinese Fishermen for Poaching

Philippine fishing authorities said on Tuesday they had detained 25 Chinese crew of two seized fishing boats on suspicion of poaching, a move that could further strain ties between two countries at odds over maritime sovereignty. A joint team from the Philippine coastguard and the Bureau of


India, US Meet for First Maritime Security Dialogue

Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar and U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter. Photo: Govt of India

 India and the U.S. held the first round of discussions under the recently-constituted maritime security dialogue between officials of Defence and External Affairs ministries and their U.S. counterparts.   Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs David Shear


China: Stakeholders Should Manage S.China Sea Differences Constructively

China and the United States should manage their differences over disputed waters in the South China Sea constructively, one of China's top military officials has said. Fang Fenghui, a member of China's Central Military Commission, told General Joseph Dunford


China Claims Wide Support for Stance on S.China Sea

China has widespread support in the international community for its decision not to have anything to do with a legal case lodged by the Philippines against Chinese claims in the South China Sea, a senior diplomat said on Thursday.   China has been stepping up its rhetoric ahead of a ruling


US Warship Sails near Chinese-claimed Reef

(U.S. Navy photo by Emiline L. M. Senn)

China scrambled fighter jets on Tuesday as a U.S. navy ship sailed close to a disputed reef in the South China Sea, a patrol China denounced as an illegal threat to peace which only went to show its defence installations in the area were necessary.  


Philippines' Duterte Says Would Seek Multilateral S. China Sea Talks

Rodrigo Duterte said on Monday that if he became Philippine president he would call for multilateral talks to resolve disputes over the South China Sea, which should include the United States and Japan as well as rival claimants. Duterte also said China should respect the Philippines' exclusive


Chinese Fishing Boat, Cargo Ship Collision Leaves 17 Missing

East China Sea Image House maps

Seventeen people were missing after a Chinese fishing boat collided with a Maltese cargo ship and sank in the East China Sea on Saturday, state media reported, citing the country's coastguard fleet. The fishing boat, Lu Rong Yu 58398, had 19 people on board when the incident happened at 3.40 a.m


China: S.China Sea Criticism Could Have Ramifications

The USS Blue Ridge on patrol (U.S. Navy image)

International criticism of China over the disputed South China Sea will rebound like a coiled spring, a Chinese diplomat said on Friday, as a U.S. warship visited Shanghai against a backdrop of rising tension in the region. China claims almost all of the energy-rich South China Sea


Vietnam Asks Japan for Vessels to Strengthen Coastguard

Vietnam has asked Japan to provide vessels to strengthen its coastguard, a Japanese official said on Thursday, in the latest sign of growing ties among the states locked in maritime rows with China.   The request emerged during talks between visiting Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida






 
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