At a briefing last month, Voltaire Gazmin, the Philippine defense minister, said land reclamation work at Johnson South Reef started in February. There have been reports of Chinese activity at two other reefs in the Spratlys. “They are creating artificial islands that never existed since the creation of the world,” says Eugenio Bito-onon, mayor of [...]
Manila seeks to shore up its South China Sea defences – with the help of its US allies
As fears grow that China is on an aggressive South China Sea territorial grab, a sleepy Philippine village is being transformed into a major naval base that may host US warships.
Ulugan Bay, a small, picturesque cove [...]
“What will it mean for South China Sea stability if additional military airstrips are built? My forecast: nothing good,” Erickson said.
China has active expansion programs on Gaven Reef and Cuarteron Reef, and the placement of a port and airstrip on Fiery Cross or any of the others would “be used to counter a US [...]
Major war in East Asia is a very unpleasant, but not unthinkable scenario. Of course, the US would be involved from day one in any military conflict in the East or South China Seas. However, Europe’s role would be less clear, due to its increasing strategic irrelevance. Most probably, except the UK, Europeans would deliver [...]
Sand, cement, wood and steel are the latest tools in China’s territorial arsenal as it seeks to literally reshape the South China Sea.
Chinese ships carrying construction materials regularly ply the waters near the disputed Spratly Islands, carrying out work that will see new islands rise from the sea, according to Philippine fishermen and officials [...]
China’s ongoing territorial disputes with Vietnam and the Philippines in the South China Sea, involving a row over an oil rig near the disputed Paracel Islands with the former and over the detention of Chinese fishing boats near the Spratly Islands with the latter, may be just the prelude to a period of protracted strife [...]
China refused to defend its territorial claims in the South China Sea to a United Nations tribunal because it doesn’t recognize international arbitration of its dispute with the Philippines.
“China’s position that it will not accept or participate in the tribunal case involving the Philippines hasn’t changed,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hong Lei said in Beijing [...]
For China’s autocrats, history is a weapon. This past weekend, for example, a Chinese general told Southeast Asian nations that their territorial claims in the South China Sea were irrelevant because “China has had indisputable sovereignty over the South China Sea for around 2,000 years,” reported the state-owned [...]
“Asked by Labor Senator Sam Dastyari what would happen if an accident or miscalculation happened, Mr Richardson replied: “We don’t go there.””
The head of Australia’s Defence Department says there is a risk of conflict in relation to territorial disputes in the South and East China seas.
Tensions are rising over the resource-rich waters, with [...]
China’s actions asserting its claims in the South China Sea are “unhelpful,” Australian Defence Minister David Johnston said at a security forum, echoing his U.S. counterpart who called China a destabilizing factor.
“They’ve been certainly unhelpful, and if they’re unhelpful they must be destabilizing,” Johnston, 58, said yesterday in an interview at the Shangri-La security [...]