MANILA, Philippines—Citing the “suspicious” yet “stable relationship” between China and the United States, a top Chinese newspaper told the Philippines on Thursday to “cool down” in looking to American backing in settling its territorial disputes, saying the country should start to be more independent in taking care of its own affairs.
In an editorial titled “No Winners in Containment Strategy,” the Global Times cautioned the Philippines and Japan against US reliance in pushing for their claims against China in disputed territories saying the American side would not give up its longstanding relations with the Chinese despite recurrent spats.
“The public in the Philippines and Japan have been striving to find any hint of support from the US. But it’s time for these countries to cool down. East Asian countries should take serious measures to solve their own problems,” the China paper said.
“The Philippines and Japan wouldn’t help the US at the loss of their own interests. Nor would the US if the situation was reversed,” read the editorial, which came out on the heels of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s visit in Beijing this week.
The Philippines is contending with China for ownership of parts of the resource-rich Spratly Islands, Recto Bank and Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).
The tension between China and Japan has also been escalating of late due to conflicting claims on Senkaku Islands (Diaoyu for the Chinese).
Both nations are longtime defense partners of the US. While the latter has vowed neutrality on territorial issues, the Philippines continues to count on America’s support in pursuing its claims in the disputed waters.
The Global Times, however, said that US has been looking to China as much a partner as it has been doing with other Asian countries, especially as US-Sino trade relations have been flourishing.
“Looking into Sino-US relations, we can find no specific incident in recent years that could fundamentally change the nature of strategic relations between China and the US. The two harbor more strategic suspicions toward each other, but both behave cautiously when taking concrete actions,” the paper said.
“Trade between China and the US has been active in recent years. Although there have been increasing economic frictions between the two, the overall atmosphere for cooperation remains,” said the paper.
The US is known to be strengthening its defense capabilities in the Asia-Pacific, a move that has been viewed in China as an effort to “contain” its rise as an economic and military power in the region.
To this, Global Times said: “It would be incredible if the US focused its national strength on East Asia and launched a bid for strategic containment of China. This would be costly and have no benefit for the US. Such a strategic choice would be one that the US could not bear.”
Tags: China , Diplomacy , Foreign affairs , Global Nation , International relations , Panatag Shoal , Philippines , Recto Bank , Scarborough Shoal , South China Sea , Spratly Islands , territorial disputes , Territories , US , West Philippine Sea
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