Commentary/Analysis

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Robert Beckman | October 29, 2014 | Source: RSIS Commentaries
Synopsis Several of the reefs occupied by China in the Spratly Islands are being greatly expanded through land reclamation. China’s reclamation activities cannot enhance its claim to sovereignty over the reefs or change the legal status of the reefs under international law. Commentary
Jayant Menon | October 14, 2014 | Source: East Asia Forum
Launched as a political bloc and security pact in the aftermath of the Vietnam War, ASEAN has evolved to embrace an ambitious economic agenda. Its latest project is to establish the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 31 December 2015. But is this likely? The blueprint for achieving the goal envisages the AEC standing on four pillars and meeting the deadline depends on progress on each of them.
Reny Harding | October 8, 2014 | Source: https://medium.com/@renyharding

The 2014 APEC summit is scheduled to be held in Beijing this coming November, and until a few days ago, it was anyone’s guess whether Philippine President Benigno Aquino would attend (he will). Unlike with lower level officials, the absence of heads of state in important conferences like APEC are by themselves noteworthy for what they signify in terms of bilateral relations.

Carlos D. Sorreta and Karla Mae G. Pabeliña | October 3, 2014 | Source: CIRSS Commentaries
There are petitions in the Supreme Court challenging the constitutionality of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) between the Philippines and the United States. The formal security relationship between the Philippines and the United States, as expressed through international agreements, has been challenged several times before with little success.
Joseph Franco | September 12, 2014 | Source: RSIS Commentaries

Synopsis

The Islamic State (IS) has aroused much media attention in the Philippines, with concerns raised over pledges of allegiance (bay’at) made by leaders of two groups of Muslim militants. However, links remain normative rather than operational, given the dissonance between IS ideology and Mindanao rebels.

Commentary

Euan Graham | September 11, 2014 | Source: RSIS Commentaries

Synopsis

Recent events have refocused attention on energy as a potential driver of tensions in the South China Sea.

Commentary

The recent confrontation between Vietnam and China, over the latter’s deployment of a deep-water drilling rig in disputed waters, has refocused the spotlight on energy in the South China Sea. How important is it as a driver in China’s South China Sea policy? To what extent is competition over seabed hydrocarbons compounding tensions between China and Southeast Asian territorial claimants?

Brian Spegele | September 8, 2014 | Source: Wall Street Journal

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Lim Kheng Swe | September 3, 2014 | Source: RSIS Commentaries

Synopsis

China’s multi-faceted relations with Southeast Asia is often hamstrung by Beijing’s hard line position on territorial claims in the South China Sea. Is it possible to isolate the maritime disputes from other aspects of the Sino-Southeast Asian relationship?

Commentary

Zhai Kun | September 1, 2014 | Source: China-US Focus

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James Hardy | August 14, 2014 | Source: IHS Jane's 360

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