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Water Wars

Water Wars: 'We’ve Seen This Movie Before': U.S. Suspicious of Beijing’s Motives in Solomon Islands

Biden’s ASEAN summit reinvigorates UNCLOS ratification debate, Beijing fails to gain support for Pacific Islands regional security agreement but finalizes controversial pact with the Solomon Islands, and more.

Water Wars

Water Wars: In the South China Sea, Beijing Faces Twin Threats of New U.S. Military Presence and Pushback from an Old Friend

China suffered two major setbacks in the South China Sea this week. First, sparks flew between the PRC and Indonesia when the bungled seizure of a Chinese fishing vessel in Indonesian waters almost led to a direct conflict. Later in the week, the United States and the Philippines announce a new decade-long pact that will allow American troops to rotate between five PH bases, many close to PRC installations in the South China Sea.

Water Wars

Water Wars: Calm Before Potential ASEAN-Summit Storm

This past week was the quietest in terms of breaking news since Water Wars began nearly five months ago—somewhat surprising, given that only last week the USS Curtis Wilbur conducted a freedom of navigation operation (FONOP) in the Paracel Islands. All signs point to an upcoming Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit, which will take place February 15-16, as the most likely cause of the relative calm.

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