South China Sea has been the primary root of tensions now in the Asia-Pacific. Japan and United States are seeing China as an imminent threat with both countries working on arbitration and intervention in the region. Will these be effective in deterring China from doing anything further?
China and Japan had a long history together and while relations were relatively more peaceful at present than in previous era, that peace is being threatened by the former’s efforts in the South China Sea.
“We have to encourage the U.S. to stay here,” LFP quoted Ryo Sahashi, a professor of international politics at Kanagawa University, in Yokohama, in relation to Japan’s issue with China at the moment.
“They need support and encouragement from the outside. If not, their discussion may go inward.”
Furthermore, Japan’s ruling party has called out to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration to consider requesting international arbitration in relation to China’s drilling activities in the disputed East China Sea. If this pushes through, Japan will be seeking a similar process as what the Philippines had done over the ongoing dispute.
“If China shrugs off the request, some action must be taken,” Reuters quoted Yoshiaki Harada, head of an LDP panel on resources development in the East China Sea.
“Everyone has agreed that we should not shy away from taking the matter to an international arbitration court and starting preparation for that step should be considered.” Harada added.
The United States is also not backing down on its efforts as it reportedly started planning on stockpiling military supplies along the disputed area. The army is looking into putting military hardware in Vietnam, Cambodia, and other Pacific countries yet unnamed that will allow its forces to deploy more rapidly.
“Throughout the Pacific Rim, these will be humanitarian assistance/disaster relief-type equipment and material, so that when you have typhoons and other types of natural disaster US Army Pacific Command can respond more quickly,” Breaking Defense quoted Army Material Command chief Gen. Dennis Via.
“We are looking, for example, at in Cambodia placing a combat support hospital.”
However, even with such statements, analysts think that placing supplies across the region will send a strong signal on Washington’s interest including its concern over South China Sea.