China installs rocket launchers on disputed South China Sea island

The officials reviewed the implementation of measures to build trust and boost preventive diplomacy at sea, saying the operation of hotlines between foreign ministries of ASEAN countries and China to manage maritime emergencies, and the application of the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES) in the East Sea have contributed to maintaining peace, stability, maritime and aviation security and safety in the East Sea.

Indonesia's military says four soldiers were killed when a Chinese-made anti-aircraft cannon malfunctioned during an exercise in the Natuna island chain in the South China Sea.

It claims as its border in the South China Sea the so called Nine-Dash Line (also referred to as the Ten-Dash Line or the Eleven-Dash Line), a demarcation line, with the claimed territories including the Paracel Islands, the Spratly Islands, the Scarborough Shoal, the Pratas Islands, and the Macclesfield Bank, among others.

Coming back from the Belt and Road Forum, Philippine President Duterte announced that he was open to restoring an earlier agreement with China and Vietnam for joint development of the rich resources in the South China Sea.

China has said the situation in the South China Sea has been easing up since Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte took office previous year.

China has installed rocket launchers on a disputed reef in the South China Sea to ward off Vietnamese military combat divers, Reuters reported citing a Chinese state-run newspaper, The Defense Times.

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For years, Asean officials said, China was not cooperative enough, but its Foreign Minister Wang Yi suddenly unveiled to reporters last year the goal of formulating the outline by the end of June.

Beijing has been so bellicose about its claim on the disputed islands that it simply ignored a ruling on South China Sea which went against it at the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague.

China has territorial claims on most of the South China Sea, a major trading route, through which about $5 trillion in goods pass every year.

However, formal talks began only in 2013 after Manila filed a case against Beijing at an worldwide tribunal on overlapping territorial claims in the South China Sea.

This came after the global tribunal's ruling that rejected China's claims to almost all of the South China Sea.

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