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East and South China Sea disputes need creative diplomacy: Kemp LONDON: China and the United States appear headed for a damaging confrontation over the extent of China's territorial claims in the South and East China Seas.Now that China has become the world's largest importer of oil, and energy more generally, the country's need to develop more indigenous energy supplies has become urgent.Expecting China to put the South and East China Seas off limits to exploration and production until disputes over sovereignty can be resolved through some undefined legal or diplomatic process is unrealistic.Part of the problem is that western analysts and policymakers still fail to appreciate the strategic importance of these areas.It is common to hear maritime disputes between China and its neighbours characterised in terms of uninhabited islands, submerged reefs, historic fishing grounds and unfinished business from World War Two. In reality, the disputes centre on control over areas which are thought to contain substantial quantities of oil and ...

South Korea opposition stage parliament sit-in over ferry disaster SEOUL: South Korea's main opposition party on Tuesday launched a sit-in at parliament, as a long dispute over April's ferry disaster paralysed lawmaking.The sit-in by the New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD) comes amid deadlock in parliament over plans to set up an independent inquiry into the April 16 sinking, which claimed some 300 lives.The ruling Saenuri Party has rejected a call for a consultative body allowing victims' families a role in discussing legislation needed ...
Expectant newly-weds among Japan landslide missing TOKYO: Details emerged Tuesday of a newly-wed couple who had been expecting their first baby when huge mudslides engulfed their home in western Japan, as the number of confirmed deaths from the disaster hit 60.Desperate family members were praying for the almost impossible rescue of 28-year-old Minami Yuasa, who was expecting a baby boy in November, and her husband, Yasuhiro.The couple, who were married in October last year, lived in an apartment block that was ...
Five dead, five missing after heavy rain hits South Korea SEOUL: Five people have been killed and five others are missing after heavy rains pummelled the southern part of South Korea, rescuers said Tuesday.One person was killed when a commuter bus was swept away by a flash flood into a swollen stream near the city of Changwon on Monday, the National Emergency Management Agency said. Four others aboard the bus were missing, including the driver. TV footage showed the bus being pulled downstream in muddy ...
Indonesia's president satisfied on leaving office SYDNEY: Indonesia's outgoing President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said Tuesday he leaves office with a sense of satisfaction after strengthening democracy and the economy during a decade in power.The former general stands down in October when Joko Widodo, the reform-minded governor of Jakarta who won July's presidential polls, takes the reins of Southeast Asia's top economy.In an interview with The Australian newspaper, Yudhoyono admitted there was more work to be done, but said he had accomplished ...
Japan PM Abe visits Hiroshima after killer landslides TOKYO: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Monday pledged full support for victims of last week's massive landslides in Hiroshima, as he made his first visit since the disaster to the western Japan city.The death toll from the mudslides, which buried dozens of homes, rose to 52, with a further 28 people missing as of Monday, according to Hiroshima police.Some 3,000 rescuers, including soldiers, were continuing to dig through mud and debris at the various sites ...
Japan ready to offer trial Ebola drug TOKYO: Tokyo stands ready to offer an experimental drug developed by a Japanese company to help stem the global tide of the deadly Ebola virus, the top government spokesman said Monday."Our country is prepared to provide the yet-to-be approved drug in cooperation with the manufacturer if the WHO requests," Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga.The World Health Organization (WHO) has been discussing the use of unapproved drugs as a way of getting a handle on an ...

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