Navies to demilitarize South China Sea. Oxymoron or necessity?
“Necessity,” says Katie Alsop who is a lead organizer for the Global Protest against militarization of the South China Sea.
“As I speak to you,” she added,” there are hundreds of thousands of families going hungry today because their livelihood has been destroyed by China’s aggression against ordinary fisher folk on the coastlines of many countries around the East China Sea, South China Sea and the West Philippines Sea. We call these waters the Asian Seas informally. It was China which militarized the Asian Seas by building military facilities on man-made islands, then claiming sovereignty over the sea because of its messy man-made islands.”
“While we deplore the necessity of using a show of force to protect human lives, and human rights,” continued the human rights activist, “it is our belief that in a life and death situation, all persons have the right of self defence. More than that, when a bully is harming the most weak and vulnerable, like coastal Asian family fisher folk, that is when the strong must step up. For that the Global Protest SCS Group is very grateful as are its member families in the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Japan, Brunei, and Taiwan.
“This is not just about the argument over the Taiwanese being bullied and terrified by Chinese warships and bombers, it is about small fishing boat businesses of a multi-billion dollar coastal livelihood stretching all the way around the South China Sea and its many sovereign archipelagos that existed for a thousand years or more, that China now has been stealing since 2013.”
Indian Navy to do Freedom of Navigation Patrols in South China Sea
“The deployment of the Indian Navy [warships] seeks to underscore the operational reach, peaceful presence and solidarity with friendly countries towards ensuring good order in the maritime domain,” is how the naval branch of the Indian Armed Forces explained its plan to send four major warships to the South China Sea for two months, departing from India sometime in August.
“These maritime initiatives enhance synergy and coordination between the Indian Navy and friendly countries, based on common maritime interests and commitment towards Freedom of Navigation at sea,” the Indian navy said in its statement.
Germany heads into the South China Sea
German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer explained from Wilhelmshaven port that the German Navy warship, the frigate Bayern has left on 2 August for a seven-month mission that will take it to many of the ports of nations standing up to China’s piracy in the South China Sea. Included among the ports of call are nations Australia, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam.
The first transit of the South China Sea by the crew of Bayern will be in mid-December, according to official statements of the German Navy.
“We want existing law to be respected, sea routes to be freely navigable, open societies to be protected and trade to follow fair rules,” Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer said from Wilhelmshaven.
America in the South China Sea spearheading Global Freedom of Navigation campaign
Video: CNN’s Will Ripley explains the South East China Sea conundrum in a brief documentary report.
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