China’s South China Sea island-building is for the public good (says China)



Several Chinese military and civilian officials dismissed international concern over their nation’s policy of constructing and building on South China Sea islands at a forum hosted in Beijing this weekend (Oct. 17-18).

China’s vice-foreign minister Liu Zhenmin told an audience of regional and international military chiefs, defense ministers, and scholars that not only would China continue to build on the islands—the sovereignty of which are disputed by several countries—but that it is doing so in everyone’s interest.

“Countries alongside the South China Sea and vessels sailing through the waters will receive better service,” said Liu, referring to the construction and operation of new lighthouses on two of the disputed Spratly Islands.

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