China’s Neighbors Are Wary of Its Assertiveness in the South China Sea

A U.S. Navy amphibious assault vehicle with Philippine and U.S. troops on board storms the beach facing one of the contested islands in the Scarborough Shoal, South China Sea, April 21, 2015 (AP photo by Bullit Marquez).
A U.S. Navy amphibious assault vehicle with Philippine and U.S. troops on board storms the beach facing one of the contested islands in the Scarborough Shoal, South China Sea, April 21, 2015 (AP photo by Bullit Marquez).
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Editor’s note: This article is part of an ongoing WPR series on the South China Sea territorial disputes and the various claimant countries’ approaches to addressing them. U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter was in Hanoi today, where he and Vietnamese Defense Secretary Phung Quang Thanh signed a “joint vision statement” that outlines expanded military ties and increased maritime security cooperation. Carter also announced plans to give Vietnam $18 million for the purchase of coast guard vessels from the United States. Carter’s visit comes as tensions in the South China Sea are on the rise, given China’s aggressive island-building campaign. […]

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