ASEAN Defense Ministers Call for Peace, Stability in South China Sea

ASEAN defense ministers on Thursday approved a declaration seeking to turn the South China Sea, a maritime region marked by tension over competing territorial claims, into a sea of peace. Meeting in Bangkok, the defense chiefs representing the 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations signed a 35-point declaration, which includes a guideline to reach a code of conduct in the South China Sea while improving information-sharing among members. “We affirm the importance of promotion of peace, stability, safety and freedom to sail in the South China Sea,” Thai Defense Minister Prawit Wongsuwan told reporters after the ministers signed the declaration, which was delivered to ASEAN Secretary-General Dato Lim Jock Hoi. It was part of a joint statement issued by the defense ministers as they wrapped up their meeting in Bangkok, which began Wednesday..........................

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