China 'offers joint drills with Asean in South China Sea to check US

Yusuf

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Beijing is willing to hold joint drills with Southeast Asian countries in the disputed South China Sea, the defence minister said on Friday in what analysts saw as a response to Washington's plan to sail its warships around the Spratly Islands, which China claims as territory.

Striking a conciliatory tone over an increasingly tense spat in the oil-rich region, Defence Minister Chang Wanquan told his counterparts from the Association of South East Asian Nations at an informal summit in Beijing that there was a need for all to push for the "correct" development of ties.

In a statement on the Defence Ministry's microblog, Chang was cited as saying that all sides should manage and control the risks from their disputes.

Beijing was willing to hold joint military exercises in the South China Sea with the Asean nations next year, covering accidental encounters, search and rescue as well as disaster relief, the statement said.


Defence Minister Chang Wanquan (fourth from right) with his counterparts from the Association of South East Asian Nations at an informal summit in Beijing yesterday. Photo: Reuters

Analysts say the proposal signals a shift in Beijing's approach to growing regional concerns over its island reclamations.

Beijing has so far responded angrily to the United States' plan to send its naval vessels in the coming days into the 12-nautical-mile zone around China's newly built artificial islands in the Spratlys, vowing to deliver a "head-on blow" to any foreign force that "violates" its sovereignty.

But its joint-drills proposal would prove to Washington that Beijing could work peacefully with the Southeast Asian countries, said defence expert Ni Lexiong . "The message is, if we are a threat as described by the US, why would other countries be willing to conduct peaceful exercises with us?"

China's relations with several Southeast Asian nations, especially the Philippines and Vietnam, have been strained in recent years over its increasingly assertive tone in pushing territorial claims in the disputed South China Sea. The country's island building in the region has further escalated the tensions.

The Defence Ministry's statement on its microblog did not give further details on the proposed joint exercises. It is not clear if they will be held bilaterally with each of the 10 members of the Asean, or as a group.

If Beijing opted for a multilateral drill, it would be a departure from its long-held position that the Asean should not get involved in resolving the South China Sea disputes, said China security specialist Zhang Baohui, of Hong Kong's Lingnan University.

"The island reclamations have unified the Asean countries, which is not a favourable situation for China," he said.

If Beijing offered to hold the drills with the grouping, Zhang said, "this shows China has realised how concerned the Asean countries are" over the dispute.

The analyst said Beijing likely hoped that the olive branch it was holding out could persuade the Southeast Asian nations not to support Washington's planned move in the South China Sea.

"China used to not really care about [the Asean], but now it is starting to worry," he said.

Beijing has in recent years conducted several bilateral drills with Asean countries that were focused on non-traditional security issues - a strategy Zhang said was aimed at building trust with the countries and easing tensions over the territorial disputes.

"But it is questionable what these kinds of exercises can do to resolve the territorial disputes because these non-traditional security issues have nothing to do with the sovereignty problems," he said.

The Asean countries are expected to respond differently to China's joint-drills proposal, with some likely to accept the invitation while others - in particular Vietnam and the Philippines - would be wary, said Ian Storey, a senior fellow at Singapore's ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute.

"Exercising with other navies reveals your weakness, which Vietnam will be keen to hide," Storey said. Chang yesterday said there were also other areas to work on together.

"At present, the regional situation is generally stable, but there are obvious downward economic pressures and non-traditional security challenges are increasing," he said, referring to the threat from terror groups.

"Forces from outside the region are using the internet [to threaten] social stability."


http://m.scmp.com/news/article/1868...=&utm_medium=&utm_campaign=SCMPSocialNewsfeed

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amoy

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Chinese have already had joint naval drills with Thailand Singapore, Malaysia… respectively. So whats new in the news?

~Tapa talks: Orange is the new black.~
 

apple

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Chinese have already had joint naval drills with Thailand Singapore, Malaysia… respectively. So whats new in the news?

~Tapa talks: Orange is the new black.~
Instead of acting like an a-hole, China's trying to make friends. How's that not news?

China's had "joint naval drills" have they?

Australia has, and has had for over 50 years (+ before WW2), a base in Malaysia where we helped them maintain their independence by fighting alongside them against ethnic Chinese Communists.

Singapore's the most western nation in Asia and Australia's best regional ally.

Australia had based military in Thailand and we helped them maintain their independence from Maoist Communists in their country and over the border in Cambodia.

Australia is just the little dog in Asia. You do know who the big dogs are don't you, Amoy?

But, China has had "joint naval drills"...
 

apple

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Editted to attempt to delete a double post
 

amoy

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Instead of acting like an a-hole, China's trying to make friends. How's that not news?

China's had "joint naval drills" have they?

Australia has, and has had for over 50 years (+ before WW2), a base in Malaysia where we helped them maintain their independence by fighting alongside them against ethnic Chinese Communists.

Singapore's the most western nation in Asia and Australia's best regional ally.

Australia had based military in Thailand and we helped them maintain their independence from Maoist Communists in their country and over the border in Cambodia.

Australia is just the little dog in Asia. You do know who the big dogs are don't you, Amoy?

But, China has had "joint naval drills"...
We all heard of almighty Australia.

Now back relevant to China and ASEAN ~

China launches joint naval drills with Malaysia in Strait of Malacca with more than 1,000 PLA troops
http://www.scmp.com/news/china/dipl...a-launches-joint-naval-drills-malaysia-strait

Singapore and China Conclude Naval Drill
http://www.marinelink.com/news/singapore-conclude-china391815.aspx

China Thailand conduct anti-terrorism maritime exercise
http://www.china-defense-mashup.com/china-thailand-conduct-anti-terrorism-maritime-exercise.html

~~Still waters run deep. ~~from my MiPad using tapatalk
 

apple

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We all heard of almighty Australia.

Now back relevant to China and ASEAN ~

China launches joint naval drills with Malaysia in Strait of Malacca with more than 1,000 PLA troops
http://www.scmp.com/news/china/dipl...a-launches-joint-naval-drills-malaysia-strait

Singapore and China Conclude Naval Drill
http://www.marinelink.com/news/singapore-conclude-china391815.aspx

China Thailand conduct anti-terrorism maritime exercise
http://www.china-defense-mashup.com/china-thailand-conduct-anti-terrorism-maritime-exercise.html

~~Still waters run deep. ~~from my MiPad using tapatalk
Good for you tiny dog (pats the little dog on the head condescendingly), good for you. Who's a good boy?

You go out there and try and be as important to your immediate neighbours as Australia. That will make all the other bigger, nastier dogs let you have the Spratly Islands.
 

amoy

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Good for you tiny dog (pats the little dog on the head condescendingly), good for you. Who's a good boy?

You go out there and try and be as important to your immediate neighbours as Australia. That will make all the other bigger, nastier dogs let you have the Spratly Islands.
Everyone equally good or equally bad.

Nobody in the loop will give up that pound of flesh I.e. Spratly. The more players the more merry.

But for a moment we may pat each other on the back to stay in the game.

~~Still waters run deep. ~~from my MiPad using tapatalk
 

sydsnyper

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What do the Chinese want.... they are big, powerful, in their & paki eyes - they have already toppled the USA, they build an artificial island in someone else's waters and then fight with them, they have asserted their rights almost every one of its little neighbours and now want to go boating with them.... Seriously, what do they want ???
 

bose

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China will fail in its mischief !! China first learn to be a responsible state then resolve all your dispute with your neighbour and then come and try make friends...
 

Compersion

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Just get ship that is Taiwanese (being escorted by and for usa) to get touched by a PRC ship by accident ...

Joint development drill ... With Chinese characteristics

Will be good for the Taiwanese elections also coming up
 

no smoking

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What do the Chinese want.... they are big, powerful, in their & paki eyes - they have already toppled the USA, they build an artificial island in someone else's waters and then fight with them, they have asserted their rights almost every one of its little neighbours and now want to go boating with them.... Seriously, what do they want ???
They want as much as what Americans wanted in 19 century: an Asian version of Monroe Doctrine
 

SADAKHUSH

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I do not see any reason for ASEAN nations to accept China's offer since they are refusing to settle the issue through the International Courts. China is only making "U" turn since tables have been turned against them by the ASEAN nations by forming alliance with USA, Japan and Australia. This move by China is another failed attempt in their foreign policy which is dictated by PLA to their political wing.
 

amoy

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PLA Navy gains use of port in Malaysia close to Spratly islands

Granting stopover rights to China in Kota Kinabalu – which is already open to Western navies – is a gesture of neutrality, analysts say

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 21 November, 2015, 12:23am
Malaysia will allow the Chinese Navy to use its port in Kota Kinabalu. Photo: AFP

Malaysia has allowed the Chinese navy to use its Kota Kinabalu port, close to the Philippines and the Spratly Archipelago, in what analysts say is an effort not to take sides in the territorial disputes in the region.

The agreement was made when Admiral Wu Shengli, commander of the PLA Navy, visited Malaysia last week. Chinese ships would be able to use the port in Malaysian Borneo as a “stopover location”, reported US magazine the National Interest.

Having ports as supply stops along significant routes has been a long-term plan for the Chinese navy, said Shanghai-based military analyst Ni Lexiong.

The plan includes building its own naval bases, like China has been doing on the man-made islands in the Spratly and Paracel islands, as well as acquiring access to ports in other countries in strategic locations.

One day after the Kota Kinabalu agreement, China also secured usage rights to land for state-owned China Overseas Port Holding Company at the port of Gwadar in Pakistan – situated at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, just outside the Strait of Hormuz.

Read more: China’s navy has edge over US through sheer weight of numbers in dispute over South China Sea, say analysts
In the South China Sea, Malaysia did not want to directly confront China, according to Hoo Tiang Boon of Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University. He said this was in contrast to the Philippines and Vietnam, which were strengthening ties

with the United States in the face of China’s increased military presence.

“The Malaysians are still relatively cautious about trying to confront the Chinese about this,” Hoo said. He added that some Malaysians were displeased about Chinese naval and coastguard vessels entering the waters near the disputed Luconia Shoal and James Shoal, and that fishermen were complaining about their Chinese competitors exploiting the region.



Allowing the Chinese navy to dock and refill in Kota Kinabalu did not mean turning it into a base of the Chinese, he added.

It was a gesture of neutrality, Hoo said, since the same port was already open to international powers such as the US and the French.

Last month, US guided-missile destroyer Lassen stopped over at Kota Kinabalu after conducting a patrol less than 12 nautical miles from China’s man-made facilities on the Subi Reef, a move strongly protested by the Chinese side.

Admiral Wu on Thursday told US Admiral Scott Swift that his forces had closely monitored the provocative US actions and had shown “enormous restraint”, while warning that they stood ready to respond to breaches of China’s sovereignty.

From a Chinese perspective, being able to use the Kota Kinabalu port would certainly make the Americans unhappy, Ni said.

Such cooperation would also show that China was able to peacefully interact in the South China Sea with countries in the disputed region, and was not bullying smaller nations, Ni added. “It is also good for the Malaysians. By demonstrating good relations with China, they will be more confident when dealing with the Filipinos and Vietnamese when it comes to their respective disputes with each other,” he said.

The Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia and Brunei also have overlapping claims in the region.
 

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