The past month in the Indo-Pacific saw flyovers of military exercises, anti-ship ballistic missiles and rising Taiwan tensions.
Sean Quirk is a JD/MPP joint-degree student at Harvard Law School and Harvard Kennedy School. He holds a BA in Political Science from Columbia University and served as a surface warfare officer in the U.S. Navy for five years. The views expressed here are his own and do not reflect those of the Department of Defense, the U.S. Navy, or any other agency of the United States Government.
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China and Vietnam are poised for confrontation over oil drilling in the southwestern portion of the South China Sea. Vietnam alleges that a Chinese survey vessel, Haiyang Dizhi 8, has been conducting an oil and gas survey within Vietnam’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) since July 2019.
Philippine and Chinese officials will launch a joint investigation into the at-sea collision that left 22 Filipino fishermen stranded in the South China Sea. On June 9—the official Philippines-China Friendship Day—a Chinese vessel rammed and sank a Philippine fishing vessel near Reed Bank (known in Tagalog as Recto Bank), northeast of the Spratly Islands, and reportedly fled after the collision. A Vietnamese fishing vessel later rescued the Filipino crew members who had been left in the water.