17 July 2020
The Trump administration’s assertive new policy in the South China Sea is putting Southeast Asian nations on the front line of a growing dispute between the US and China – regardless of whether they can stand up to Beijing. Analysts noted, though, that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s statement referred only to maritime territory, rather than islands, shoals and other land masses, as the U.S. position has been not to become involved or take sides in those disputes.
“After the 2016 award, the U.S. put out a statement asking all parties to abide by the ruling,” said Collin Koh, a Research Fellow and naval analyst at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore. “The new thing now is that the U.S. is more assertive in pushing things out in a more aggressive manner” regarding maritime disputes and the nine-dash line, he said.
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Last updated on 21/07/2020