US, Japan Call For Stop To Land Reclamations In South China Sea

Frederick Owens
August 13, 2017

ASEAN and China should establish a set of rules that were "legally binding, meaningful, effective and consistent with global law", Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop, Japanese Minister of Foreign Affairs Taro Kono and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in a statement following a meeting in Manila.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said Washington wants eventually to talk to North Korea, but thinks discussions would not be productive if Pyongyang comes with the intention of maintaining its nuclear weapons.

The Kono statement represents the sincerity of Japan, Wang said.

After the adoption of the framework, China President Xi Jinping lauded Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, ASEAN's current chairman, and notified him that China is ready to bring greater closeness to the China-ASEAN community of shared destiny.

Asean ministers are now meeting in Manila for the 50 ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting.

The Asean foreign ministers, in a joint statement on Saturday, slammed North Korea for its intercontinental ballistic missile tests that may put at risk the peace and stability in the region.

Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) on Sunday said that hinged on whether the situation was stable, and if there was no "major interference" from outsiders.

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Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said Cayetano's approach on how to deal with China' extensive claim to the resource-rich waters was just "overly-interpreted".

On July 25, Wang urged ASEAN to reject "nonregional forces" that want to stir up trouble in the South China Sea, an apparent reference to the US and Japan, which have carried out maritime exercises there.

As a sign of China and ASEAN relations, the trade hit the Dollars 450 billion mark last year and the flight grew to 2,700 last year connecting China to the 10 ASEAN nations. The administration is also mulling joint development activities with China in the area.

Cayetano also said the country had no intention of raising the ruling any time soon, "because we won't make any progress". The International Court of Arbitration in The Hague denied much of China's territorial claim to the South China Sea. As in past criticisms, they did not cite China by name.

China and ASEAN nations on Sunday expressed satisfaction with the achievements made in their strategic partnership during the last 15 years and agreed to further enhance cooperation.

In a speech in Thailand last week, Ms Bishop said there is a compelling need to defend the rules-based order in the region, saying "rising tensions in the South China Sea are a challenge to regional security".

'Our objective is to bring all parties involved in the nuclear issue back to the negotiating table ... to realise the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula, ' Wang said on the sidelines of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) meetings in Manila.

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