China Warns US to Stay Out of South China Sea Dispute

Clinton Comments Fuel Accusations of 'Taking Sides'

by Jason Ditz, September 04, 2012

Chinese Foreign Ministry officials have warned the US to stay out of the ongoing territorial disputes within the South China Sea, saying that they are “not helpful” and accusing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton of taking sides in recent comments.

Which of course Clinton and the rest of the Obama Administration have been doing. The islands and maritime claims are split between China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia and Taiwan, and the US has endorsed the claims of all the others at the expense of China.

Though the islands are virtually all uninhabited, they are sitting on top of some valuable resources, including oil deposits, leaving each nation scrambling to assert their claims. China has upgraded their claims in the region to a “military garrison.”

Speaking yesterday in Indonesia, Clinton pushed for nations to “move quickly” to resolve the claims in the region. The Philippines in particular are a dicey case for the US, as Philippines officials claim the US is obliged to enforce their claims in the region militarily.

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