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US deeply concerned about Chinese aggression in South Sea: 'We will continue to act where international law allows'

US deeply concerned about Chinese aggression in South Sea: 'We will continue to act where international law allows'

Philippine and Chinese ships collide in the latest standoff over an atoll in the South China Sea

Admiral john aquilino, The head of the US Indo-Pacific Command said on Tuesday that it was “Very worried” Concerning China's aggression against Philippine forces near disputed islands in the South China Sea.

The Chinese Coast Guard has repeatedly clashed with Philippine patrol vessels near the area Thomas Scholl IIoccupied by the Philippines. Last month, a number of Filipino sailors were injured when a Chinese ship swamped a smaller Filipino ship, and two other Chinese coast guard vessels used high-pressure water to break the windshield of the Filipino ship.

When asked if coral reefs were submerged in Spratly Islands It was the most dangerous flashpoint in his command area, hooked He said at a forum at the Lowy Institute, an international policy think tank based in Sydney: “I'm very concerned about what's happening at Second Thomas Shoal.”

“I'm very concerned about the direction it will take.”Aquilino said. He added, “These actions are dangerous and illegal and lead to destabilization of the region.”

“What's next and how far are you willing to go in this field?” – Aquilino asked.

Admiral John C. Aquilino, commander of US Indo-Pacific Command, speaks at a special conference of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in Singapore. Reuters/Caroline Shea/archive photo

The United States, Japan, the Philippines and Australia held their first joint quadrilateral exercises in Philippine waters in the South China Sea on Sunday, which they said were aimed at defending freedom of navigation and overflight in a region disputed by China.

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Aquilino said the joint exercises demonstrated the two countries' ability to operate safely, effectively and legally in the region.

“These kinds of events and things are exactly what we need to do to demonstrate that strength among like-minded allies and partners, and that we will continue to act where international law allows.”Aquilino said.

The Chinese military announced Sunday that it had conducted air and sea patrols and that all activities “disrupting the South China Sea” were under control, in an apparent response to naval exercises conducted by the United States and its allies.

For his part, the Prime Minister said: Japan, Fumio KishidaArrived this Monday in WashingtonThe American capital to make an official visit, something that a Japanese ruler has not done in nine years, and to participate in the first… Trilateral summit with the Philippines and the United States.

“I have arrived in Washington, the capital of the United States. Now I will begin my official visit, the first by a Japanese prime minister in nine years,” Kishida said, according to a statement from his office.

As the official spokesman said White House Homeland Security, John KirbyHe stressed that this visit comes to “celebrate” bilateral relations that focus on “peace and prosperity,” as well as to recognize the importance of the alliance between the two countries to create a “safer” region in the Indo-Pacific.

Security in Indo-Pacific oceans That's why the President of the United States, next Thursday, Joe Bidenyou will receive in White House his Filipino counterpart, Ferdinand Marcos JrKishida in what will be the first tripartite meeting between these countries.

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(With information from AP)