In the South China Sea, where many countries lay claim to parts of its waters, China has sent four more oil rigs. China claims up to 90 percent of the area while other such as the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan and Brunei are also vying for ownership. The move ramps up tensions in an already-tense area.
The announcement comes at a time when many countries in Asia are nervous at Beijing’s increasing assertiveness in the potentially energy-rich waters, where sovereignty over countless islands and reefs is in dispute.
According to China, everyone just needs to relax.
“For these normal activities there is no need for over-reading or to make any particular links,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a daily briefing in Beijing. “Please don’t worry, there won’t be any problem.”
That’s reassuring. We guess there’s nothing to see here… moving on.
Read more: The Star Online
Update (July 16, 2014): China has decided its work is done and will move the rig. The move apparently had nothing to do with the repeated protests and escalating tensions by the Vietnamese.
Read more: The New York Times