Asean demands maritime talks on South China Sea

Wen Jiabao

Southeast Asian nations displayed a rare show of unity yesterday against China‘s sweeping maritime claims, calling for the first formal talks with Beijing over a sea dispute that has raised tensions and exposed deep divisions in the region.

As Chinese premier Wen Jiabao arrived in Cambodia for meetings with Southeast Asian leaders, the 10-member Asean bloc appeared determined to avoid a repeat of an embarrassing breakdown of talks in July over competing territorial claims in the mineral-rich South China Sea.

Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen will tell Mr Wen that Asean wants to begin talks to develop a binding code of conduct, aimed at reducing the chance of naval flashpoints, as soon as possible, Asean secretary-general Surin Pitsuwan said.

China’s assertive claims in the South China Sea have caused deep divisions within the bloc.

Meanwhile, the Asean leaders have completed “refining and rephrasing” the Joint Statement to Celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the Declaration of Conducts for Parties in the South China Sea.

The draft declaration would be brought for consultation with Mr Wen before it is announced at the Asean-China summit today, Kao Kim Hourn, Cambodia’s secretary of state of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said.

The joint statement was intended to expedite cooperation between the two sides, he said.

Mr Wen arrived in Phnom Penh yesterday for talks with Asean leaders ahead of the broader East Asia summit that includes the United States and Japan, as well as other Asian nations.

Source: Bangkok Post “Asean demands maritime talks
 


Categories: Politics & Law

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5 replies

Trackbacks

  1. South China Sea dispute wrecks Asean unity « China Daily Mail
  2. China might be moving closer to ASEAN on South China Sea. « China Daily Mail
  3. The end of the “ASEAN way” as the South China Sea takes centre stage « China Daily Mail
  4. East Asian cooperation: Is Japan falling behind China? « China Daily Mail
  5. New ASEAN chief seeks talks with China. « China Daily Mail

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