China says Philippines trying to ‘rope in’ others to sea dispute

China’s military Thursday accused the Philippines of trying to “rope in” other countries to the dispute over the ownership of the South China Sea and stir regional tension after Japan joined a military drill with the Philippines, Reuters reported.

Reed Bank, an energy-rich area, is claimed by  China and the Philippines

Reed Bank, an energy-rich area, is claimed by both China and the Philippines

According to Japanese and Philippine officials, a Japanese surveillance aircraft, with three Filipino guest crew members, this week flew at 5,000 feet above the edge of Reed Bank, an energy-rich area that is claimed by both China and the Philippines. It was accompanied by a smaller Philippine patrol aircraft.

Chinese Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun, asked about the exercises, said that bilateral military cooperation between countries should benefit regional peace and security and not harm the interests of third parties.

“Certain countries are roping in countries from outside the region to get involved in the South China Sea issue, putting on a big show of force, deliberately exaggerating the tense atmosphere in the region,” he told a monthly news briefing.

“This way of doing things will not have a beneficial effect on the situation in the South China Sea.”
The exercise by Japan and the Philippines comes as Manila conducts separate drills with the U.S. military that began last week.

China claims most of the potentially energy-rich South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year. The Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan also have overlapping claims.

Japan worries that China’s domination in a region through which much of its sea-borne trade passes would isolate it. Tokyo is also locked in a dispute with Beijing over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea.

However, China and Japan have been gradually rebuilding ties after Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held ice-breaking talks in Beijing last year.

Yang said that China and Japan had resumed discussions last week about setting up an air and maritime
communication mechanism, designed to reduce the risk of accidents and misunderstandings.

Both countries agreed to step up preparatory talks on setting up this mechanism, he added.

Categories: Asia Times News & Features


  • China Lee

    China’s fifth Type 094 Jin-class SSBN nears completion

    Source (Open Source IMINT):
    Though it is not yet official, China’s fifth Type 094 SSBN appears near completion.

    1. The fifth Type 094 SSBN has to undergo sea trials.
    2. The fifth Type 094 has to be equipped with a regular crew and an official welcoming ceremony.
    3. The Pentagon will eventually officially confirm the existence of the fifth Chinese Type 094 SSBN.
    4. Alternatively, China could unofficially confirm the fifth Type 094 SSBN by taking a picture of all five Type 094 SSBNs together.

    The strategic implication is another increase in China’s submarine-based thermonuclear warheads.

    5 Type 094 SSBNs x 12 JL-2 SLBMs per SSBN x 8 MIRVs per JL-2 SLBM = 480 Chinese thermonuclear warheads on submarines

    It becomes an over-riding imperative for the United States to find the Chinese Red Octobers. Are the Chinese Type 094 SSBNs hiding under the polar ice cap? Are they in the Western Pacific? Or are they in the waters north of Chile? With five Chinese Type 094 SSBNs, they could be in all three geographic regions. Also, the Type 094 SSBNs could be protected by Chinese Type 093G nuclear attack submarines.

    According to the Pentagon 2015 Report on Chinese Military Power (see reference below), the fifth Type 094 SSBN is the last one of its class. China is about to transition to the Type 096 Tang SSBN. It is currently unknown whether the Tang SSBN will have a “hump” or not.
    China’s next-generation Type 096 Tang SSBN could still have the “hump” seen on the Type 094 Jin-class SSBN. It is currently unknown whether the Tang SSBN will carry 12, 18, or 24 SLBMs. It is also unknown whether the Tang SSBN will carry the regular JL-2 SLBM (navalized DF-31 ICBM) or the longer-range JL-2A SLBM (which is a navalized DF-31A ICBM and capable of striking the entire continental United States from China’s coast).
    The uppermost picture is a conceptual illustration of the hydrodynamic third-generation Type 095 nuclear attack submarine. The bottom two pictures depict the next-generation Type 096 ballistic missile submarine (e.g. the successor to the Type 094 Jin-class SSBN). In this illustration, the Type 096 Tang SSBN is hydrodynamic and “humpless.”
    The Type 098 SSBN is the expected successor to the Type 096 Tang SSBN. As the fourth generation of China’s nuclear ballistic submarines, the Type 098 SSBN is expected to be a mature design without a hump. The Type 098 SSBN is expected to carry a full complement of 24 JL-3 SLBMs (ie. navalized DF-10 10-MIRV ICBM). Each Chinese Type 098 SSBN will carry 240 MIRVs.

    In conclusion, The Hunt For China’s Red Octobers will become overwhelming. There will be many more Chinese boomers cruising the world’s oceans.
    Reference (p. 9 of Pentagon 2015 Report on Chinese Military Power):

  • Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha

    It is odd. When Crimea and Russia merged, it started a stand off between Moscow on the one hand and the US/NATO powers on the other. Yet not a single article made an issue of Russia annexing the Sea of Okhotsk, to her east. After annexing that sea, Moscow kicked out all the international companies working in that sea, for the massive mineral and oil wealth on her bed and beneath it. It was not even an issue to the world.
    Russia used the UN to annex that sea. The article appeared in the Asia Times when that happened. That article also stated that China may follow the Russian example regarding the South China sea, which the Western Media is making it into such a big issue. It also brings up another question. Would the US stop rival powers from claiming a good deal of the Gulf of Mexico?