Warships in South China Sea will invite conflict, says Dr M



KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 — Malaysia and Asean will continue to push for a peaceful resolution of the South China Sea dispute, said Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

He said the increase in China and the US’ military presence in the region could destabilise the vital shipping route.

“In the Malacca Straits and the South China Sea, the passage of ships are still free without obstruction but once people start sending warship then we have a problem.

“There might be accidents and as we know accidents may lead to war,” he said at the Malaysia Beyond 2020 conference in Kuala Lumpur today.

He also said Malaysia and Asean must find ways to mitigate the US-China trade war.

“We can hope for the best and prepare for the worst by working with our Asean neighbors to cushion the impact of superpower collision.

“We have to enhance our collaboration. This means building capacity by developing our competitiveness,” he said.