Cambodia's FM defends position on South China Sea

China urges North Korea to stop missile tests and resume talks

China urges North Korea to stop missile tests and resume talks

China's top diplomat says talks for a nonaggression pact aimed at preventing clashes from erupting in the disputed South China Sea may start this year if "outside parties" don't cause a major disruption.

Pyongyang also lambasted ASEAN member states for not being "morally qualified" to meddle in North Korea's nuclear program because they ignored the "hostile policy and nuclear threat" that the US imposed on the North.

In addition, after the ASEAN meeting, China was particularly satisfied that the ASEAN states had approved the framework for the Code of Conduct for the South China Sea (COC).

The joint statement issued after the latest ASEAN foreign ministerial meeting did not mention China by name, only emphasizing the importance of "non-militarization" of the South China Sea.

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As a hard-won result achieved through the joint efforts of the two sides to reach an agreement, the document mirrors the shared commitment to build peace and stability in the waters demonstrated by China and the Asean countries recently. Despite calling for non-militarisation in the South China Sea and raising concerns about "land reclamation", the statement did not insist on a legally binding code of conduct for managing the area, as Vietnam had pushed for.

They called on "all claimants to make and clarify their maritime claims" and to "resolve disputes peacefully in accordance with the global law of the sea".

Cayetano also said the country had no intention of raising the ruling any time soon, "because we won't make any progress". The Code of Conduct envisioned by the U.S., Australia, and Japan would be "legally binding, meaningful, effective, and consistent with worldwide law".

The meeting between Cayetano and Ri came after the foreign ministers of ASEAN's 10-member states issued a statement reiterating their "grave concern over the escalation of tensions" on the Korean Peninsula.

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"At first, there was a word in the framework of the COC about "not being legally binding".

The new research led by Bonnie Glaser with Center for Strategic & International Studies finds an estimated 3.37 trillion dollars in trade passed through the South China Sea in 2016.

Before the ASEAN 50 founding anniversary, the Chinese government announced that the South China Sea territorial dispute should not allow outsiders to resolve the dispute but it should be resolved only by claiming parties involved.

'Our goal is to bring all parties involved in the nuclear issue back to the negotiating table ... to realise the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula, ' Wang said on the sidelines of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) meetings in Manila.

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In July 2016, the arbitral tribunal in the Hague ruled that Beijing has no legal or historical basis for its nine-dash line, which demarcates its claims to nearly the entire South China Sea.

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