5 MARCH 2016
GS II: Effect of policies & politics of developed & developing countries on India’s Interests.
China slams the U.S. “Pivot to Asia” as the root cause of tensions in South China Sea
China has slammed the “Pivot to Asia” doctrine of the United States for the growing tensions the South China Sea, where a trilateral exercise involving New Delhi, Washington, and Tokyo is scheduled later this year.
On Friday, the war of words between China and the U.S. escalated when Fu Ying, the spokesperson for the National People’s Conference (NPC) countered the U.S. assertion that China was responsible for the militarisation of the South China Sea. She pointed out that instead, it was Washington’s naval build up under the “Pivot to Asia” doctrine, which was the root cause of tensions in the Asia-Pacific.
China claims sovereignty over most of South China Sea, a position that is contested by several countries including Vietnam, Philippines and Taiwan. It has recently accelerated conversion of some of the disputed reefs into artificial islands, and positioned surface- to-air missiles at Woody Island in the Paracel island chain.
The spokesperson stressed that China was ready to play the role of a regional security provider—an aspiration that clashes with Washington’s post-war role as the principal hegemon in the Asia-Pacific region.The U.S. Admiral also revealed that that the forthcoming Malabar naval exercise comprising India, U.S. and Japan would be held in the north Philippine Sea, not far from the South China Sea.
A write-up on Friday, related to the proposed Malabar exercise, in the state-run Global Times quoted a South China Sea expert as saying that by participating in the exercise, Japan would like “to relieve the pressure from disputes with China in the East China Sea,” while India’s takeaway was its interest in raising its profile in Southeast Asia.