Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Tension mounts in South China Sea

A wrecked navy transport ship perched on a remote coral reef could be the next flashpoint in the South China Sea, where China and five other claimants bitterly dispute territory.

The Philippines is accusing China of encroachment after three Chinese ships, including a naval frigate, converged just 5 nautical miles from an old transport ship that Manila ran aground on a reef in 1999 to mark its territory.

Philippine officials say they fear the Chinese ships will block supplies to about a dozen Filipino marines stationed in abject conditions on the rusting ship, raising tensions over one of Asia's biggest security issues.