BEIJING (AP) — A look at recent developments in the South China Sea, where China is pitted against smaller neighbors in multiple territorial disputes over islands, coral reefs and lagoons. The waters are a major shipping route for global commerce and are rich in fish and possible oil and gas reserves.
CHINA HOLDING NEW MILITARY DRILLS
China is holding another round of military drills in the South China Sea amid an uptick in such activity in the area highlighting growing tensions.
The Maritime Safety Administration said the exercises would run from Monday through Sunday. It warned outside vessels to steer 5 nautical miles (9.26 kilometers) clear of the drill area but otherwise gave no details.
China announced late last month that it had held drills in the South China Sea involving long-range bombers and other aircraft.
Chinese forces have also confronted U.S. Naval vessels conducting “freedom of navigation operations” near Chinese-held islands, as well as forces from Australia and countries that challenge China’s claim to the entire strategic waterway.