China Making Decisions Tough on ASEAN in South China Sea

Peace and Freedom

With ongoing reclamation work, the outlook for the region remains grim.

By Luke Hunt
The Diplomat

A stunning series of photos released by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington D.C. offer a grim outlook for the region as Beijing ratchets-up its territorial assertions over the hotly disputed Spratly and Paracel islands.

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At least four major man-made structures have been erected on Itu, Gaven, Johnson South and Fiery Cross reefs with supply platforms, communications, gun emplacements, and docking facilities installed alongside artificial islands over the winter months.

CSIS analyst Greg Poling said China’s reclamation work in the South China Sea – known as the East Sea in Hanoi and the West Philippines Sea in Manila – was progressing faster than anticipated and that Beijing had gone further than any other claimant.

“Its reclamation certainly violates the spirit of the 2002 Declaration of Conduct (DOC) between China and…

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