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Jakarta Post

ASEAN closes ranks over South China Sea dispute

  • Dian Septiari
    Dian Septiari

    The Jakarta Post

PREMIUM
Jakarta   /   Tue, January 21, 2020   /  06:55 am
ASEAN closes ranks over South China Sea dispute Foreign ministers of ASEAN from left to right: Malaysia's Saifuddin Abdullah, Myanmar's Union Minister for International Cooperation Kyaw Tin, the Philippines' Teodoro Locsin, Singapore's Vivian Balakrishnan, Thailand's Don Pramudwinai, Vietnam's Pham Binh Minh, Brunei's Minister of Foreign Affairs Erywan bin Mohd Yusof, Cambodia's Prak Sokhonn, Indonesia's Retno LP Marsud, Laos' Saleumxay Kommasith and ASEAN Secretary-General Lim Jock Hoi pose for a group photo during the ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Retreat in Nha Trang on Friday, Jan. 17. (AFP/Nhac Nguyen)

China’s new envoy to ASEAN has arrived in Jakarta facing growing pressure from the increasingly vigilant bloc as its top diplomats put more emphasis on compliance to international law in ongoing negotiations for a final and binding code of conduct (COC) on the South China Sea. Ambassador Deng Xijun arrived in the Indonesian capital over the weekend and submitted his credentials to ASEAN Secretary-General Lim Jock Hoi on Monday, marking the formal start of his duties in Southeast Asia. Speaking to reporters after his meeting with Lim, Ambassador Deng said there had been positive developments in the COC talks, with the completion of the first reading of the draft last year.   “So I think with our joint effort we will reach a consensus at an early date according to the three-year mission,” he told reporters at the ASEAN Secretariat compound, in reference...

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