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SOUTH CHINA SEA

China Rejects U.S. Bid for Sea Dispute Talks in East Asia Summit (International Business Times)


China said its territorial dispute with neighbors should not be discussed in the East Asia Summit (EAS) in Bali, Indonesia on Saturday.

China‘s foreign minister Liu Zhenmin told reporters in Beijing Tuesday that the territorial dispute on the Spratly Islands is a matter for the claimant countries to resolve among themselves. Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam are claiming the whole or part of the Spratly Islands.

“China believes that the disputes should be resolved through peaceful consultations between parties directly concerned,” AFP quoted Liu as saying.

Liu said outside intervention “will only complicate the issue and sabotage peace and stability and development in the region.”
The statement was issued in response to pronouncements by U.S. deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes that the issue on the Spratlys should be discussed in the EAS, where leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, South Korea and the U.S. will also attend.

China said its territorial dispute with neighbors should not be discussed in the East Asia Summit (EAS) in Bali, Indonesia on Saturday.

China‘s foreign minister Liu Zhenmin told reporters in Beijing Tuesday that the territorial dispute on the Spratly Islands is a matter for the claimant countries to resolve among themselves. Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam are claiming the whole or part of the Spratly Islands.

“China believes that the disputes should be resolved through peaceful consultations between parties directly concerned,” AFP quoted Liu as saying.

Liu said outside intervention “will only complicate the issue and sabotage peace and stability and development in the region.”
The statement was issued in response to pronouncements by U.S. deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes that the issue on the Spratlys should be discussed in the EAS, where leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, South Korea and the U.S. will also attend.

The ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
“We believe the issue of maritime security is an appropriate issue to discuss at the East Asia Summit,” Rhodes told reporters traveling with U.S. President Barack Obama.

Obama will attend the EAS and is expected to raise the issue. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao is also attending the summit.

Meanwhile, Philippine President Benigno Aquino III plans to proposed rules to govern the disputed areas in the separate meeting of ASEAN leaders in Bali on Thursday. Aquino will also ask Wen and his counterparts in ASEAN to define the disputed and undisputed areas of the Spratly Islands for the purpose of setting a joint cooperation area.

The disputed islands consist of a bout 750 reefs, islets, atolls, cays and islands in more than 425,000 square kilometers of the South China Sea.

China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam have military presence on 45 islands to assert their sovereign right on the territory.

http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/250945/20111116/south-china-sea-territorial-dispute-spratly-islands.htm

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