Probably for the first time in the height of the South China Sea row between the claimant countries in the region, the Chinese government has found its new ally from all 22 Arab countries in its claim in the highly disputed territory.
In the recently concluded China-Arab Cooperation Forum held in Doha, Qatar last week, all the 22 Arab nations have backed China’s claim in most part of the South China Sea, invoking its self-imposed nine-dash-line rule.
Gong Xiaosheng, the leading Chinese diplomat in the Middle East bared the support of the Arab countries in the country’s claim in the region. The 22 Arab nations, in a joint statement, lauded China’s stance over the case to which, China considered as a ‘praiseworthy’ statement, the Chinese news outfit CRJ reported.
Since day one of the dispute, China has been pushing for bilateral talks between the claimant countries. In the same way that it lambasted the intervention of other countries that are not parties to the issue, especially the United States.
The United States, meanwhile, has been doing patrol activities in the region in the past months in cooperation with the Philippines and other countries in the region. But the US government has emphasized that its presence in the region is in connection with its ‘freedom of navigation’ campaign as previously reported by Morning News USA.
This, further angers the Chinese, which emphasized that the US should step out in the issue as it’s a non-party to the issue. In a separate report from the CNN, China remained its aggressive activities in the disputed area. To date, it now has built facilities in 3200 acres of the disputed region. The three largest of these facilities will have three huge outposts. In each of the outpost, an airfield with 9800 feet long runway.
The information was compiled in a report submitted by the Pentagon.
“China continues to invest in military programs and weapons designed to improve power projection, anti-access area denial and operations in emerging domains such as cyberspace, space and the electromagnetic spectrum,” Abraham Denmark, deputy assistant secretary of defense for East Asia, was quoted as saying by CNN.
“China’s leaders seem committed to sustaining defense spending growth for the foreseeable future,” he added.
It can be recalled that the Philippines has lodged a territorial dispute case against China before the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague. The international tribunal hears cases concerning disputes in the United Nation Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
But China has been adamant not to participate in the same case, saying it would boycott the court’s decision no matter how it would turn out, especially the court’s decision has already been ignored in the past. The court is expected to dispense a decision in the case either late this month or early June.