More cooperation, not confrontation, needed in the South China Sea

scmp

The decision by France and Britain to join the United States in naval patrols of the disputed waters will only raise tensions with Beijing, and they would be advised to listen to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Britain and France have decided to join the United States in naval patrols of the South China Sea, an action they believe will help safeguard navigation. But the tones of their defence ministers in making the announcement at the Shangri-La Dialogue security gathering in Singapore was interpreted by many in China and Southeast Asia as nothing but provocation. China has never restricted movement of shipping in the contested waters and none of the three Western nations are claimants, so such an unwarranted foreign presence is bound to worry those seeking a peaceful resolution. Pragmatism and efforts to build mutual trust, not action guaranteed to stir tension, are what the region needs…

Read more : SCMP, 06.06.2018