Six U.S. senators urged their colleagues on Friday to support legislation reaffirming U.S. support for freedom of navigation, saying they consider China’s recent actions in the South China Sea troubling.
China this week accused Vietnam of intentionally colliding with its ships in the South China Sea after Vietnam asserted that Chinese vessels used water cannon and rammed eight of its vessels during the weekend near an oil rig China deployed in a disputed area.
“These actions threaten the free flow of global commerce in a vital region,” Democratic Senators Robert Menendez of New Jersey, Ben Cardin of Maryland and Patrick Leahy of Vermont and Republicans Marco Rubio of Florida, Jim Risch of Idaho and John McCain of Arizona said in a joint statement.
China’s movement of the rig and “subsequent aggressive tactics” by its ships are “deeply troubling,” they said.
China claims almost of the South China Sea, rejecting rival claims to parts or all of the oil- and gas-rich waters from Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei.
The six senators introduced a resolution in April affirming U.S. support for freedom of navigation in the region and urging the parties involved in any territorial disputes to seek peaceful democratic resolutions.
Separately on Friday, U.S. Representative Eliot Engel of New York, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, termed China’s action “needless provocations.”Source: Reuters “U.S. lawmakers call Chinese actions in South China Sea ‘troubling’”
- Vietnam dispatches 29 ships to intercept Chinese oil rig in South China Sea; standoff with Chinese ships (chinadailymail.com)
- Philippines police detain Chinese fishing boat in South China Sea (chinadailymail.com)
- China’s navy near Malaysia ‘to defend South China Sea’ (chinadailymail.com)
- China warns ASEAN not to talk about South China Sea disputes (chinadailymail.com)
- Southeast Asia group calls on China to speed up maritime security talks (tiananmenstremendousachievements.wordpress.com)
- Philippines jails Chinese fishermen for infringing wildlife law (tiananmenstremendousachievements.wordpress.com)
- U.S. lawmakers call Chinese actions in South China Sea ‘troubling’ (trust.org)
- Vietnam and China face off in South China Sea (scooprocket.com)
- China tensions top ASEAN summit talks in Myanmar (sfgate.com)
- China accuses Vietnam of ramming its ships in South China Sea (theguardian.com)