China’s Maritime Disputes

Speakers: Elizabeth C. Economy, C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and Director of Asia Studies, Council on Foreign Relations
Richard N. Haass, President, Council on Foreign Relations
Shen Dingli, Vice Dean of the Institute of International Affairs, Fudan University
Sheila A. Smith, Senior Fellow for Japan Studies, Council on Foreign Relations
Simon Tay, Chairman, Singapore Institute of International Affairs
Producers: Jeremy Sherlick
Hagit Ariav
April 21, 2014

The East and South China Seas are the scene of escalating territorial disputes between China and its neighbors, including Japan, Vietnam, and the Philippines. The tensions, shaped by China’s growing assertiveness, have fueled concerns over armed conflict and raised questions about Washington’s security commitments in its strategic rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region.

“Maritime disputes in the East and South China Seas are a pressing issue for the United States, China, and much of the rest of the world,” says Elizabeth Economy, CFR’s Director for Asia Studies. The region is rich in natural resources, home to many of the world’s most dynamic economies, and an important global trade route for energy supplies and other goods. Continue reading


History Wars: A Long View of Asia’s Territorial Disputes


September 13, 2013


The Diplomat takes a look at the long and complex background to some of the region’s most intractable disputes.


Next month, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) will deliver its verdict in the case of Cambodia and Thailand’s territorial dispute over the Preah Vihear temple. For several months, the court has been poring over a judgment it made on the same issue fifty years earlier. That judgment was partly based on interpretations of old treaties, old maps and other fragments pertaining to the temple’s 900-year history. The whole exercise, in other words, has been as much an historical investigation as it has been a legal process.

Since neither the Thais nor the Cambodians seem inclined to accept an unfavorable verdict, the ICJ’s decision will probably go down as just another moment in the temple’s long and contested history, rather than as the end of the story so far as the dispute goes. Even so, the matter may be nearer closure than some of Asia’s other most tortuous territorial arguments.

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Coming on The Cable: Live Coverage of the Shangri-la Security Dialogue

Posted By Josh Rogin clip_image001Thursday, May 31, 2012 – 12:50 PM clip_image001[1]


Singapore – Security in the South China Sea, tensions in North Korea, and the changing nature of Asian security will top the agenda this weekend at the Shangri-la Security Dialogue, the largest annual gathering of Asian and Pacific defense officials and experts in the world.

Your humble Cable guy is already on the ground as the top delegations from 28 countries, including 16 defense ministers, convene on the island city-state this weekend for the 12th annual iteration of the conference, run by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) out of London. Last year’s event was packed with news, as when then Defense Secretary Robert Gates unveiled a new U.S. plan to increase the U.S. military commitment to Southeast Asia.

Gates met with Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie at last year’s event and Liang fought off verbal attacks from several regional powers on China’s aggressive activities in the maritime domain. He even answered several questions posed by The Cable. Although the United States and China tried to portray an image of improving U.S.-China military ties, last year’s event highlighted the deep disparity between the two country’s visions for the region.

This year, the United States is sending a large, high-level delegation led by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and including Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey, Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns, Pacific Command chief Adm. Samuel Locklear, and Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Affairs Mark Lippert.

There will also be a hefty U.S. congressional delegation here in Singapore, including Senate Armed Services ranking Republican John McCain (R-AZ), Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), and Rep. Eni Faleomavaega (D-Samoa), the ranking Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

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U.S., Armenian Defense Officials Map Out Closer Cooperation


Azerbaijani military vehicles take part in a parade held in Baku in June.

YEREVAN — Senior U.S. and Armenian military officials have opened two days of talks in Washington that highlight growing bilateral defense links, RFE/RL’s Armenian Service reports.
Armenia‘s Defense Ministry said it was represented at the “bilateral defense consultations” by First Deputy Defense Minister Davit Tonoyan and other officials.
A short statement issued by the ministry before the meeting said the Armenian delegation was to discuss with senior Pentagon officials “issues relating to U.S.-Armenian defense cooperation.” It did not elaborate on the agenda of the talks. Continue reading

East Africa: Interpol Closes in on Car Theft and Drug Trafficking

Panorama of Dar es Salaam city a few minutes b...

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Joseph Mwamunyange

27 September 2010

Nairobi — An extensive Interpol operation is under way to cut off international motor vehicle theft and drug trade that finds its way into East African countries from Asia and Europe.

A combined team of police officers from Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, South Africa, Zambia, Mauritius and Interpol headquarters in Lyon, France, has impounded at least 60 stolen cars in Tanzania. According to the Director of Criminal Investigations Robert Manumba, the cars were stolen from Kenya, Japan, South Africa, Malaysia, United Kingdom, Germany, Slovenia, Mozambique, Tanzania and Australia.

“We have already carried out similar operations in Malawi and Zambia where cars, drugs, guns and other such items have been impounded,” said Mr Manumba. Continue reading

India – Youth arrested for posing as Salman on website

Time zone of India in relation to its neighbou...
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PTI, 28 January 2010, 10:40am IST

SURAT: A youth was arrested for allegedly drawing donations from fans of Bollywood star Salman Khan through a  fake website, Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS) officials said today.

Intakhawab Alam was arrested yesterday from Rander for posing as Salman Khan on a fake website created by him, they said.

He used to reply to fans and keep the website updated, ATS officials said.

Alam had created a website under the name of Bollywood actor Salman Khan and used to send messages to fans and asked for their comments and opinions on articles written on the site. Continue reading

China supports trilateral cooperation among Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan

China supports trilateral cooperation among Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan

20:02, January 26, 2010

China said here Tuesday that it supports the trilateral cooperation among Turkey, Afghanistan and Pakistan in their efforts to address the issue of Afghanistan.

The statement was made by Yang Jiechi, the special representative of Chinese President Hu Jintao and Minister of Foreign Affairs at the regional summit on Afghanistan.

Yang said that Afghanistan has gradually recovered from the traumas of war and scored commendable achievements in institution building, economic development and external relations.

However, he noted, Afghanistan is still confronted with a myriad of daunting challenges. The security situation remains volatile, the process of economic reconstruction is slow and people’s livelihood needs urgent improvement. Continue reading