Vice President of the US, Kamala Harris, has hit out in China during a speech that she made in Singapore. It is her first Southeast Asian tour. She has accused Beijing of coercion and intimidation in the South China Sea. It has been a regional flashpoint for years now.
She said that she would stand with the allies to face all the threads. Her trip is an attempt to reaffirm the commitment of the US to the region. Her speech has already touched on several other issues. She also mentioned that the decision of the US to pull -out from Afghanistan is courageous and right.
The vice president criticized the claim to the “vast majority of the South China Sea”. It is more of intimidation and coercion.
She said, “these unlawful claims have been rejected by the 2016 arbitral tribunal decision, and Beijing’s actions continue to undermine the rules-based order and threaten the sovereignty of nations.”
She also referred to a landmark legal victory which the Philippines have won over China. It is more concerning due to the territorial inclusions in the south China Sea. Despite the tribunal ruling, there is also a constant presence of the Chinese Coastguard. The Filipino fishermen reported the harassment that the authorities have imposed.
China is quite assertive over what it says about its right to this contested region. China is also building up its military presence to back up all those claims.
Several other countries like Japan are climbing the ownership on various small islands and reefs that dot the sea with its access to resources.
Though this China Sea issue is a massive one, the rushed exit of the Afghans from their countries has overshadowed the trip of Ms. Harris. She did not go into detail on this issue. She only said that they have achieved what they were planning to do. The US is now focusing on evacuating Afghans who have worked with US troops. Ms. Harris is about to visit Vietnam later on Tuesday.