PH welcomes China's participation in global naval drill | Global News
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PH welcomes China’s participation in global naval drill

By: - NewsLab Lead / @MSantosINQ
/ 03:38 PM June 11, 2014

In this Monday, June 9, 2014 photo released by China’s Xinhua News Agency, Chinese naval soldiers stand on China’s missile destroyer Haikou at a naval port in Sanya, south China’s Hainan Province. The Chinese naval squadron has left port to take part for the first time in the world’s largest naval exercises hosted by the U.S. in waters near Hawaii. AP

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines welcomed China’s participation in the Rim of the Pacific naval exercises, the largest of its kind, hosted by the United States in Hawaii, saying it would “ease tensions” brought by maritime disputes.

“We welcome (China’s) move as a way to ease tensions [and] as a part of confidence-building in the region,” Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) spokesman Charles Jose said in a press conference Wednesday.

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China deployed four ships to the world’s largest naval exercises being held in the Pacific every two years. Among those ships is the Chinese Peace Ark hospital ship that assisted in the relief and recovery effort in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan).

China will join the naval exercises for the first time bringing the total of participating countries to 23. At least 1,100 Chinese military officers and sailors including a commando unit and a dive team are onboard four Chinese ships.

FEATURED STORIES

Maritime disputes in the region have caused tensions between China and neighboring countries, including Japan, Vietnam, and the Philippines.

Japanese and Vietnamese vessels have repeatedly engaged in brief non-violent encounters with Chinese ships over disputed waters.

The Philippines is also locked in a maritime dispute with China over the Spratly Group of Islands which is claimed by China in its entirety. Manila has turned to the UN arbitral tribunal to settle the territorial conflict.

The Philippines is a participant to the naval exercises and has sent component staff personnel to the event.

RELATED STORIES

China ships depart for naval drill with US, others

UN court tells Beijing: Prove your sea claims

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TAGS: China, Japan, maritime dispute, Naval Exercises, Philippines, Rim of the Pacific, US, Vietnam
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