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  • Aug 1, 2014
  • Updated: 12:35pm


The Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, was established on 8 August 1967 in Bangkok, Thailand, with the signing of the Asean Declaration by Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. Since then, membership has expanded to include Brunei, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. Its aims include accelerating economic growth, social progress and cultural development of its member states and the protection of regional peace and stability.

Asean Summit

Asean foreign ministers urge self-restraint as tensions with China continue to rise

Bloc calls for 'self-restraint', as Manila says it will try Chinese fishermen held in disputed waters

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 10 May, 2014, 3:24pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 11 May, 2014, 11:00am


  • Yes: 81%
  • No: 19%
11 May 2014
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Total number of votes recorded: 862

Asean nations voiced alarm yesterday over increasing tensions in the South China Sea after Vietnam and the Philippines squared up to Beijing over the disputed waters.

In a statement issued yesterday, foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations who gathered ahead of a leaders' summit today urged "all parties concerned ... to exercise self-restraint and avoid actions that could undermine peace and stability in the area".

Philippine President Benigno Aquino said yesterday that he would raise his country's territorial dispute with China at the meeting and call for support to resolve the conflict through international arbitration, which Beijing has repeatedly rejected.

China has instead called for bilateral talks with each claimant.

Tensions over the South China Sea continued to escalate yesterday, with Philippine officials saying they had jailed pending trial 11 Chinese fishermen caught with endangered sea turtles off a disputed shoal in the sea.

Manila rejected Beijing's demand for the men to be freed.

On the other side of the South China Sea, near the Paracel Islands 120 kilometres off the coast of Vietnam, Hanoi and Beijing are engaged in a stand-off over China's drilling for oil.

Watch: US senators: China sea actions 'deeply troubling'

Both countries accuse the other of ramming their ships in the area, in the worst setback in Sino-Vietnamese ties in years.

Asean Secretary General Le Luong Minh, who is Vietnamese, said yesterday recent disputes added urgency to concluding Sino-Asean talks on agreeing a code of conduct in the resource-rich sea to ease tensions.

The Philippine National Police on Tuesday intercepted a Chinese fishing boat carrying about 350 sea turtles off Half Moon Shoal in the Spratlys, arrested its crew and took them to the southwestern province of Palawan to face charges of violating wildlife protection laws.

Wei Min, associate professor of the Institute of Afro-Asian Studies at Peking University, said China would be the "biggest victim" if the incident was not resolved as soon as possible.

"If not, no matter what explanation the Chinese government provides, the reputation and reliability of the government will decline dramatically, and this will worsen the turbulent situation in the South China Sea."

The Chinese foreign ministry said on Friday it reserved the right to take further action over the detention of the fishermen.

At their summit, which is being held in Myanmar for the first time and ends today, Asean countries including Vietnam and the Philippines will push for a strong statement. Others, mindful of China's economic weight, may be reluctant to criticise Beijing directly, diplomats say.

Reuters, Agence France-Presse


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Formerly ******
Dear ASEAN Nations, Other Than China:
Are you willing to accept chains around your freedom and sovereignty in exchange for being allowed to trade with China? You might want to give serious second thoughts to such an exchange.
It would be good for the ASEAN nations to keep in mind an old adage of one of America's Founding Fathers, Benjamin Franklin. Upon the signing of the Declaration of Independence, he said, "We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately" He meant that, if the patriots didn't stay cohesive against the British, then surely the British would pick off the signers one-by-one and hang them.
Think about this.
它將好的東盟國家,要牢記的本傑明 · 佛蘭克林美國的開國元勳之一句古老的格言。簽署後從英國,獨立宣言 》 的他說,"我們必須掛在一起,或肯定地說我們應被絞死"他意味著,如果愛國者不留凝聚力反對英國,然後,肯定英國會摘去簽名者一個接一個絞死他們。
Oil is where the problem is. Spratly Islands is the is the forth biggest oil deposit in the world. That's where the big disputes will be. It's good America steps in, otherwise what a mess Asia will be.
The spratlys are closest to Malaysia and it's continental shelf, every party claims historical evidence, so when this all goes to the world court- it should all be Malaysia's.
just like in the Americas where everyone from Canada down to Argentina must learn to accommodate US interests, same with ASEAN and all countries in pacific asia, they must learn to live with China and the Chinese hegemony. this is not fair but it is being what it is... you have to live with it...
China should provide military help to the oppressed muslims in Mindanao and to the Filipino Marxists and the landless Filipinos. That will give the crazy fella Aquino something to ponder about. It will also put a stop to the Filipino elites and landowners from robbing and raping the Filipinos.
Formerly ******
@ Rambo:
And might not other nations provide to the Tibetans and Uighurs arms, explosives, and other aid? There's an old saying that goes, 'What goes around, comes around.' It means that if you were to start something, there's a good chance it could end up coming back at you. Think about Germany and Japan in WWII.
和可能不適用於其他國家提供給藏人和維吾爾人武器、 炸藥和其他援助嗎?有句老話說這樣的 '什麼,惡報'。這意味著如果您要啟動的東西,有一個好的機會,它可能最終會回來看你。想想德國和日本在第二次世界大戰。
be calm in Asia, china commies!
you see you are not only race to exist in Asia!
Now Asia has the variety of races and people who are all loving peace except you and koreans!
do not be so aggressive towards the other Asian people!
did you understand, xi of han chinese leader!
Aquino is making the Pinoys look like idiots.
The prequel of world domination always starts with the harassment / conquest of nearby neighbors. There is much more sinister going on under the pretext of island disputes. I see a storm brewing behind all the smokes and mirrors.
I think I must be missing out here on something between China and Vietnam. China has held the Paracel for 40 years and just decided to drill there but Vietnam only now gets angry and sends out the fishing fleet to throw fish at the Chinese ships?




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