South China Sea challenges pose risks to Asean unity | Bangkok Post: business

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South China Sea challenges pose risks to Asean unity

Finalising Code of Conduct and building consensus measures among claimants are urgent priorities.

  • Published: | Viewed: 3,461 | Comments: 0
  • Newspaper section: Asia focus
  • Writer: Radhika Gupta
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A recent Asean meeting in Brunei ended with a joint communique in which members pledged to work more closely with China to find an amicable solution to South China Sea disputes, after Beijing agreed it was ready to look into drafting a Code of Conduct. 

The Code of Conduct is necessary to reduce tensions and prevent parties from getting into confrontations, either by choice or miscalculation, the outcome of which would be a disaster for the whole region.

The leaders of Brunei, the current Asean chair, showed remarkable courage and statesmanship to discuss the issue, which in addition to China involves almost half of the Asean members who claim 60-odd islands and atolls.

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