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Defence & Aerospace

U.S. offers to help South East Asia patrol South China Sea; most to Vietnam


A Vietnamese naval soldier stands quard at Thuyen Chai island in the Spratly archipelago January 17, 2013

A Vietnamese naval soldier stands quard at Thuyen Chai island in the Spratly archipelago January 17, 2013

The United States on Monday offered $32.5 million in assistance to Southeast Asian nations, more than half to Vietnam, to boost maritime security, which comes as tension grows with China over rival claims in the South China Sea.

On his first visit to Vietnam as secretary of state, John Kerry denied that the assistance had anything to do with China. He however called for “intensified negotiations and diplomatic initiatives” between China and Japan on resolving differences in the East China Sea.

Kerry said up to $18 million of the funds would go toward strengthening Vietnam’s coastal patrols to help its coastguard react quicker to search and rescue missions, and for disasters. The funding would also be used to buy five “fast” patrol boats for Vietnam’s coastguard in 2014, he added.

“This announcement has nothing to do with a recent announcement by any other country,” Kerry told a joint news conference with his Vietnamese counterpart, Pham Binh Minh.

“This is part of a gradual and deliberate expansion that has been planned for some period of time which we have been working on,” he said, adding: “This is really an ongoing policy and not some kind of quickly-conceived reaction” to increased tension.

Still, Kerry said the United States opposed “coercion and aggressive tactics” to advance territorial claims, saying any disputes should be resolved through international institutions.

China claims almost the entire oil- and gas-rich South China Sea, overlapping in different places with claims made by Taiwan, Malaysia, Brunei, the Philippines and Vietnam.

The United States has said it is neutral in the dispute – centered on China’s historic claim of waters deep in the maritime heart of Southeast Asia – but is determined to preserve peace and ensure that sea-lanes vital for the world economy are not hindered.

China also has disputes with Japan and South Korea over different sets of tiny islands in the East China Sea.

HUMAN RIGHTS CONCERNS

While announcing closer cooperation between the United States and Vietnam on a range of issues from the economy to education, climate change and trade, Kerry said he had raised U.S. concerns with Minh over Vietnam’s human rights record.

“This is something we talked about openly and frankly … Vietnam needs to show continued progress on human rights and freedoms, including the freedom of religion, the freedom of expression and freedom of association,” he said.

A group of 47 lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives wrote to Kerry before his visit to Vietnam urging him to tie trade talks to progress on human rights.

Vietnam is part of a group of a dozen countries negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. A deal would establish a free-trade bloc stretching from Vietnam to Chile and Japan, encompassing some 800 million people and almost 40 percent of the global economy.

“There is some progress that is being made and we would encourage more progress to be made,” Kerry said referring to Vietnam’s record on rights.

“This is an ongoing conversation, absolutely.”

Kerry said he had raised individual cases of abuse during his meeting with Minh, although he gave no further details. “We had a very direct and healthy exchange about this,” he said.

Minh described his meeting with Kerry as “constructive” and acknowledged differences with the United States over rights.

“The secretary and I also agreed that the two sides maintain candid and constructive dialogue on issues of differences including human rights,” he said, speaking through an interpreter.

Source: Reuters “U.S. offers help to South East Asia, most to Vietnam, to patrol seas”
 
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About chankaiyee2

Author of the book "Tiananmen's Tremendous Achievements" about how with the help of Tiananmen Protests, talented scholars with moral integrity seized power in the Party and state and brought prosperity to China. The second edition of the book will be published within a few days to mark the 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Protests All the parts in the first edition remain in the second edition with a few changes due to information available later and better understanding. There are also some changes for improvements of style. The new parts are Chapters 12-19 on events in China after the first edition was published: The fierce power struggle for succession between reformists and conservatives; Xi Jinping winning all elders’ support during his mysterious disappearance for 2 weeks in early September, 2012; and Xi Jinping Cyclone. Chan Kai Yee's new book: SPACE ERA STRATEGY: The Way China Beats The US An eye-opening book that tells the truth how the US is losing to China. The US is losing as it adopts the outdated strategy of Air-Sea Battle while China adopts the space era strategy to pursue integrated space and air capabilities: It is losing due to its diplomacy that has given rise to Russian-Chinese alliance. US outdated strategy has enabled China to catch up and surpass the US in key weapons: Hypersonic weapons (HGV) that Pentagon regards as the weapon that will dominate the world in the future. Aerospaceplane in China’s development of space-air bomber that can engage enemy anywhere in the world within an hour and destroy an entire aircraft carrier battle group within minutes. Anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons, anti-ASAT weapons, stealth aircrafts, drones, AEW&C, etc. The book gives detailed descriptions of China’s weapon development based on information mainly from Chinese sources that the author monitors closely. U.S. Must Not Be Beaten by China! China is not a democracy. Its political system cannot prevent the emergence of a despotic leader or stop such a leader when he begins to bring disasters to people. A few decades ago, Mao Zedong, the worst tyrant in world history did emerge and bring disasters to Chinese people. He wanted to fight a nuclear war to replace capitalism with communism but could not bring nuclear holocaust to world people as China was too weak and poor at that time. If a despot like Mao Zedong emerges when China has surpassed the US in military strength, world people will suffer the misery experienced by Chinese people in Mao era. China surpassing the US in GDP is not something to worry about as China has the heavy burden to satisfy its huge population, but China surpassing the US in military strength will be world people’s greatest concern if China remains an autocracy. US people are of much better quality than Chinese people. What they lack is a wise leader to adopt the correct strategy and diplomacy and the creative ways to use its resources in developing its military capabilities. I hope that with the emergence of a great leader, the US can put an end to its decline and remain number one in the world. China, US, space era strategy, air-sea battle, space-air bomber, arms race, weapon development, chan kai yee

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