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Manila's base plan targets China (2)

By Zhao Shengnan  (China Daily)

08:12, July 30, 2013

Aggressive stance

Li Guoqiang, deputy director of the Center for Chinese Borderland History and Geography at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said Manila is building up and concentrating its military forces near the South China Sea "with a clear target — China".

The move continues Manila's stance on the issue this year, which violates the spirit of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and increases the risks of conflicts in the region, Li said.

"If all related parties resort to military means as Manila has for a resolution, the region will surely become a powder keg."

China, the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei have overlapping territorial claims over parts of the South China Sea. China's call for a peaceful solution has recently gained a positive response from nearly all the involved parties, but not Manila.

The report AP cited said that the cost of repairs and improvements at Subic needed for an air force base there will be at least $119 million.

Despite the high cost, the plan is likely to take place with assistance from Washington, which has been shifting its strategic focus to the Asia-Pacific region, and Tokyo, whose ties with Beijing have been strained after Japan illegally "nationalized" China's Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, Li said.

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Email|Print|Comments(Editor:YanMeng、Zhang Qian)

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