ASEAN to issue statement on South China Sea


Foreign ministers of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations will have a meeting via a video link on Wednesday. They are expected to issue a statement aimed at addressing escalating tensions in the South China Sea.

Their key topics will include the disputed sea, which is claimed by countries including China and some ASEAN members.

The United States has expressed a view that that Beijing’s maritime claims across most of the South China Sea are “completely unlawful.”

The two countries have been trading accusations over each other’s actions in the region.
In July, the US Navy deployed aircraft carriers to the sea. In the following month, the Chinese military test-fired ballistic missiles toward the sea.

A draft joint statement obtained by NHK expresses the member states’ concerns over the land reclamations, activities and serious incidents in the area, which have eroded trust and confidence, and increased tensions.

Later this week, the East Asia Summit of foreign ministers and the ASEAN Regional Forum will be held. The US and China are expected to take part in the two events.