Tensions around the contested island of Thitu (Tagalog: Pag-asa; Chinese: Zhongye) are escalating as China and the Philippines continue to press their claims. In March, the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) and other observers counted up to 275 Chinese vessels near Thitu, up from December’s high of 95.
Latest in Water Wars
Chinese maritime militias are spotted off the coast of the Philippines’s Thitu Island, and Pompeo assures the Philippines of the U.S.’s military commitment to defend Philippine assets in the South China Sea.
China announces the opening of a new rescue facility in the South China Sea, while India and France increase naval cooperation and the internet tries to decipher the significance of a new naval weapon.
Japan is taking steps to modernize its military in the face of an increasingly unpredictable security environment.
Nations throughout the Pacific are signing deals, but the U.S. and China continue to clash at APEC and elsewhere.
Water Wars: Pence Accuses China of Domestic Interference and Warships Have Close-Call in South China Sea
Relations between the U.S. and China chill as VP Pence accuses China of domestic interference, as tensions in the South China Sea remain high following a near-collision of warships.
The Philippines and China plan to discuss joint exploration for natural resources in the South China Sea, and Japan acknowledges deploying a submarine to the region for the first time.
The United States announces new funding for its partners in Asia, while China keeps an eye on the South China Sea and the U.S. Department of Defense keeps an eye on China.
Meanwhile, live-fire missile exercises loudly crash target vessels to the bottom of the sea.