Recent developments surrounding the South China Sea

Recent developments surrounding the South China Sea

Recent developments surrounding the South China Sea

A few days after the letter was sent, the U.S. Navy sent two warships past a handful of disputed islands in the South China Sea on Sunday in a show of force, CNN reported. "The Chinese government said that warships sailing in the disputed waters where China claims ownership is a serious infringement" of its "inherent territory".

Amid accusations that the Philippines was not taking advantage of an arbitral ruling that upheld Philippine sovereign rights over disputed territories in the West Philippine Sea, Esperon said, "This Administration does not and will not abandon the ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration on the South China Sea disputes". We elected President Duterte, he was transparent that he will be going bilateral [in his approach to the South China Sea dispute].

"They can not blame the public if there are doubts and low confidence on their words since what they are disclosing and what is happening on the ground are two different stories", Alejano said. The President has already mentioned that.

"The critics want us to announce it loudly and to confront China each and every time to the media.

If anyone gets the natural resources in the Western Philippines Sea, South China Sea, he will go to war", Cayetano said.

According to the US, the freedom of navigation missions are meant to underscore the rights of the USA and others to operate in worldwide waters and airspace and to block efforts by any nation to unlawfully extend their boundaries or territorial rights.

The Pentagon last sent a US ship through the same waters in March, near Mischief Reef in the Spratly Islands.

The briefing was held after the House Special Committee on the West Philippine Sea, chaired by former Speaker and Quezon City Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr. asked officials concerned to discuss implications of recent developments in the West Philippine Sea and the supposed government's inaction on China's aggression.

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"The government is presently upgrading port and airstrip facilities in Pag-asa Island, in line with efforts to promote the welfare of Filipinos living in the said island", he said.

China says navy pilots aboard the country's sole operating aircraft carrier have completed their first nighttime takeoffs and landings.

Mattis said USA ships are maintaining a "steady drumbeat" of naval operations and will confront "what we believe is out of step with worldwide law". "But we are also going to confront what we believe is out of step with global law, out of step with worldwide tribunals that have spoken on the issue".

Pentagon officials have long complained that China has not been candid enough about its rapid military build-up and using South China Sea islands to gather intelligence.

Our diplomats are robustly engaged on this. The disinvite was described as an "initial response to China's continued militarization of the South China Sea". There are multiple territorial claims from Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, Taiwan and Vietnam on the islands.

U.S. Navy Adm. Philip Davidson will take over PACOM from Adm. Harry Harris during the change of command on Wednesday.

Mattis is expected to have strong words for China at a Shangri-la dialogue conference in Singapore beginning on Friday.

The current head, Admiral Harry Harris, has been nominated to be the new ambassador to South Korea.

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