Chinese Oil Rig Moved Away From Disputed Waters Off Vietnam

SCSC - A Chinese oil company has completed drilling in disputed waters off the coast of Vietnam and moved a rig that sparked skirmishes between boats of the two countries and deadly anti - Chinese riots in Vietnam.

The HYSY 981 rig completed drilling in the sea off Zhongjian Island in the Xisha Islands, as the Paracel Islands are known in Chinese, on July 15, China Oilfield Services Ltd. said in a statement yesterday. [READ MORE]

US - China relations: Head to head

SCSC - If a get - together of bureaucrats could solve the world’s thorniest political problems, then the US and China would be on a strong footing. Several hundred officials from both countries held a two - day meeting in Beijing this week that brought together almost every branch of their governments.

The US Department of Transport alone was involved in five workshops. The sun even managed to shine, breaking through Beijing’s heavily polluted skies. [READ MORE]

Conference in Washington slams Beijing’s aggression in South China Sea

SCSC - China has become a danger to the stability in Southeast Asia and needs to be told to stop its maritime provocations, according to scholars and policy makers at a two - day gathering in Washington, DC.

At the fourth annual South China Sea Conference of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a major think tank, scholars and policymakers were under no illusion that Beijing would tame its ambitions on its own any time soon. [READ MORE]

Kerry Presses China to Abide by Maritime Laws to Ease Tensions

SCSC - In a closed - door session at a high - level gathering of Chinese and American officials here on Wednesday, Secretary of State John Kerry urged China to follow maritime law in nearby seas to reduce regional tensions, a senior American official said.

Mr. Kerry called on China to support the creation of a legally binding code of conduct that other Asian nations are considering to enforce rules of navigation and inhibit unilateral actions in the South China and East China Seas, said the official, who briefed reporters on the condition of anonymity under standard protocol. [READ MORE]

U.S Senate Resolution 412 on East and South China Sea

SCSC - The Senate calls on the Government of the People’s Republic of China to withdraw its HD–981 drilling rig and associated maritime forces from their current positions, to refrain from maritime maneuvers contraryto COLREGS, and to return immediately to the status quo as it existed before May 1, 2014. [READ MORE]

Asia’s Military Revolution

SCSC - A vast revolution in military affairs is taking place across East Asia. The latest signs are Chinese President Xi Jinping’s purge of General Xu Caihou, an ex - Politburo member and former vice - chairman of the Central Military Commission, on charges of corruption, and Japan’s “reinterpretation” of Article 9 of its constitution to permit the country to provide military aid to its allies.

Despite the rising regional tensions that inspired these moves, China’s relations with its neighbors and the United States are not fated to lead to direct confrontation. [READ MORE]

US strategists face dilemma over Beijing claim in South China Sea

SCSC - In June 2012, senior US and Chinese officials met in a hotel in southern Virginia to discuss a dangerous two - month stand - off taking place in the South China Sea.

At the time, dozens of government vessels and fishing ships from China and the Philippines were massed in the lagoon of Scarborough Shoal, a reef 120 nautical miles from the Philippines’ coast claimed by both countries. A naval conflict seemed a real possibility. [READ MORE]

Pentagon plans new tactics to deter China in South China Sea

SCSC - The US is developing new military tactics to deter China’s slow but steady territorial advances in the South China Sea, including more aggressive use of surveillance aircraft and naval operations near contested areas.

The rethink comes in the wake of the series of low - level incursions China has used to shift the status quo in one of the vital waterways of the global economy. [READ MORE]

China’s rise and Asian tensions send U.S. relations into downward spiral

SCSC - Hundreds of rocky islands, islets, sandbanks, reefs and cays lie scattered across Asia’s eastern waters, unimportant - looking to the naked eye but significant enough to spark what may be the most worrying deterioration in U.S. - China relations in decades.

China’s military rise, and its increasingly assertive claims to sovereignty over these largely uninhabited lumps of rock, coral and sand, have set it on a possible collision course with its neighbors, which also make various claims on the archipelagos, and with the United States, which has important alliances with three of the rival claimants and would be obliged to defend them in the event of an attack. [READ MORE]

China Just Gave Obama a Second Chance

SCSC - Years from now, when the history of Barack Obama's much - maligned Asia "pivot" is written, he may owe a debt of gratitude to an unlikely ally: Xi Jinping.

The Chinese president is, of course, vehemently opposed to the U.S. rebalancing its focus toward the East. Hardliners in Xi's Communist Party believe the U.S. president should stick to his own neighborhood and leave the world's most dynamic economic region to China’s suzerainty. But Xi's ham - handed efforts to assert himself in Asia are having exactly the opposite effect. [READ MORE]

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