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Australian Deputy PM Condemns Chinese Actions In West Philippine Sea As "Serious Escalation"

Australian Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles has condemned the actions of Chinese vessels in the West Philippine Sea, including the use of water cannons and ramming Philippine ships, labeling them a “serious escalation of tensions.” Speaking at the IISS Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, Marles emphasized that such behavior is inconsistent with the United Nations Convention […]

Australian Deputy PM Condemns Chinese Actions In West Philippine Sea As
Australian Deputy PM Condemns Chinese Actions In West Philippine Sea As "Serious Escalation"

Australian Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles has condemned the actions of Chinese vessels in the West Philippine Sea, including the use of water cannons and ramming Philippine ships, labeling them a “serious escalation of tensions.” Speaking at the IISS Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, Marles emphasized that such behavior is inconsistent with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the binding 2016 South China Sea arbitration ruling.

During his address at Plenary Session 3: Building Cooperative Security in the Asia-Pacific, Marles expressed concerns over China’s actions towards Taiwan, urging China to demonstrate through both words and actions that it does not support the invasion of sovereign states. He highlighted that China’s adherence to the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity, as outlined in the UN Charter, would significantly enhance global and regional stability.

Marles underscored the importance of trust in China’s intentions for maintaining the global rules-based order and ensuring a stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific region. He stressed that respect for sovereign rights and international law is crucial for regional order, particularly from major powers like China. He called for close attention to China’s strategic behavior and the signals it sends.

Regarding the West Philippine Sea, Marles reiterated that actions such as the use of water cannons and the ramming of Philippine vessels by Chinese ships are troubling and inconsistent with international law. He also noted that China’s military exercises around Taiwan, which simulate attacks and blockades, raise serious concerns about China’s commitment to a peaceful resolution.

Marles further pointed out that the Australian Navy has experienced unsafe and unprofessional behavior from the People’s Liberation Army Navy and Air Force. He mentioned incidents in the East China Sea, where PLA actions posed serious risks to Australian personnel, emphasizing that such interactions are increasingly frequent due to the rapid expansion of the PLA.

The IISS Shangri-La Dialogue, attended by over 550 delegates from global defense and security establishments, serves as a key platform for discussions on pressing security issues and collaborative efforts to promote regional stability.

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Australian Deputy PM Richard MarlesCHINATDGThe Daily GuardianWest Philippine Sea