South China Sea Tensions: Will WW3 Start In The Region?
Tensions in the South China Sea region continue to rise over competing claims and recent activities in the region. More importantly, China has been becoming more seemingly aggressive in its bid in the region that members of the Association of Southeast Asian Countries (ASEAN) expressed serious concern over what is happening. Will another war start in this part of the world?Advertisement
China’s recent deployment of fighter jets and missiles to the conflict region ignited more friction among rival countries. Other claimants to the South China Sea islands include Vietnam, Philippines and Brunei.
“Ministers remained seriously concerned over recent and ongoing developments,” Reuters quoted ASEAN members in a statement. The organization also said that the continued tensions and escalating military activities can affect the stability and security in the region. The West is one of the most vocal critics of Beijing ever since it started building artificial islands in the region. The country plans to expand freedom of navigation claims to challenge China on the matter.
“We call for non-militarization in the South China Sea,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh. Vietnam has also been against China’s actions in the region. “We have serious concerns about that,” the official added.
Nonetheless, China does not seem deterred by the continued pleas it recently claimed that the country is prepared to “defend its sovereignty” in the South China Sea.
“The military will be capable of dealing with any security threat. No country will be allowed to use any excuse or action to threaten China’s sovereignty and safety,” South China Morning Post quoted commanding officer of the newly-established Southern Theater Command of the People’s Liberation Army, General Wang Jiaocheng. The official said that the country remains on high alert for any security threat in the conflicted region. “But the foremost mission is to safeguard rights and interests in the South China Sea,” he added.