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Joint naval exercise of four countries begins in South China Sea

Utkarsh Classes Last Updated 08-04-2024
Joint naval exercise of four countries begins in South China Sea Defence 5 min read

The US, Japan, Australia and the Philippines launched their first joint naval exercise to project power in the South China Sea on 7 April 2024.

  • The joint exercise, which is going to be held amid the threat posed by China's aggressive actions in the South China Sea, will also include anti-submarine warfare training.

China has not yet commented on this joint naval exercise:

  • China has not commented on this yet. On 6 April 2024, the four countries issued a joint statement on behalf of their defense chiefs.
  • According to the statement, the four allies and security partners have conducted military exercises to protect the rule of law and maintain freedom of navigation and overflight in a peaceful and stable Indo-Pacific region.
  • China's name has not been taken in this statement. But all four countries reaffirmed their stance that the 2016 international arbitration award is final and legally binding.
  • The international arbitration ruling invalidated China's broader claims on historical grounds.

China refused to participate in the mediation:

  • China had rejected the decision, refusing to participate in the arbitration. Along with this, China has been continuously ignoring this mediation.
  • In 2013, the Philippines took the dispute with China to international arbitration after a tense standoff.

South China Sea Arbitration between the Philippines and China:

  • The Philippines initiated arbitration proceedings against China under Annex VII of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on 22 January 2013.
  • In this arbitration court, the Philippines made many other allegations against China ranging from dominating the region.
  • Whereas, China remained absent in all these proceedings and adopted the position of non-participation. China refused to accept this mediation.

Importance of South China Sea:

  • The South China Sea is recognized as one of the most heavily trafficked maritime routes globally, playing a pivotal role as a conduit for international trade and logistics.
  • There is tension between various countries located in the South China Sea to establish their dominance in this region.
  • China also has a dispute with the countries of this region regarding the South East Asian countries and islands adjacent to China.
  • The root of the dispute in this area is the Spratly and Paracel Islands located in the South China Sea, because both these islands are rich in crude oil and natural gas.

Reason for South China Sea dispute:

  • The main reason for this dispute is claiming different areas on the sea.
  • Territorial demarcation of this sea by China.
  • China considers 80% of the South China Sea as its own.
  • Natural oil and gas are available in abundance in the South China Sea.
  • According to a report, there are about 11 billion barrels of natural gas and extensive reserves of oil and coral within its perimeter.
  • This water area is very important for countries involved in fish trade. Besides, due to its geographical location its strategic importance also increases.
  • For all these reasons, China wants to maintain its dominance in this region.


Answer: America, Japan, Australia and Philippines

Answer: South China Sea

Answer: South China Sea
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