China says it won't budge on South China Sea sovereignty

BEIJING - China's foreign minister took a hard line Tuesday on the country's claims to virtually all the South China Sea, saying Beijing won't permit other nations to infringe on what it considers its sovereign rights in the strategically vital area.

See Full Article

Wang Yi, speaking to reporters at an annual news conference in Beijing, said that another nation's claim to freedom of navigation in the region doesn't give it the right to do whatever it wants - an apparent reference to the U.S., which has sent naval ships past reefs where China has engaged in island-building.

Wang sought to deflect allegations China is militarizing the region by building military facilities on the artificial islands. He said China's development there was defensive and that other nations were being militaristic - not China.

"China cannot be labeled as the most militaristic. This label is more suited to other countries," Wang said.

In addition to reaffirming that South China Sea islands were an "integral" part of China's territory that "every Chinese is obligated to defend," he reiterated Beijing's refusal to co-operate with an International Court of Arbitration case brought by the Philippines over disputed claims in the area.

China has conducted a massive program in the South China Sea over the past two years of land reclamation, piling sand atop reefs then adding airstrips and military facilities.

Neighbours have complained that the work has raised tensions by changing the status quo in the area, where six Asian governments have overlapping claims and which include some of the world's busiest sea lanes.

When asked whether China would allow foreign journalists to visit those islands, Wang stressed that they also were intended for civilian uses and that once they are completed, foreign journalists would be invited.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Orlando releases new photos of Pulse nightclub after attack

    World News CTV News
    ORLANDO, Fla. -- New photos released by the city of Orlando show where officers breached one of Pulse nightclub's walls to free people trapped inside during the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history. The photos released Tuesday show large punctures to an exterior cinderblock wall of the nightclub. Source
  • Conservative leadership hopefuls: Linguistic winners, losers in French debate

    Canada News CBC News
    With only two francophones in the running to be the next leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, establishing verbal credibility during the French Language debate in Quebec City Tuesday night for the rest of the field was always going to be a scramble to avoid last place. Source
  • South Korea court begins reviewing arrest of Samsung heir

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, South Korea -- A South Korean court has begun reviewing the arrest of a Samsung Electronics vice chairman who faces allegations of bribery, embezzlement and perjury. Lee Jae-yong, the only son of the Samsung chairman, has arrived Wednesday for the hearing at the Seoul Central District Court but said nothing to the huge media gathering awaiting him outside the court. Source
  • Chinese coal mine caves in, killing 9

    World News Toronto Sun
    BEIJING — The partial collapse of a coal mine in northern China has left nine people dead, state media reported Wednesday, reflecting the stubborn persistence of safety problems despite years-long efforts to reduce deaths in the sprawling sector. Source
  • 4 dead in new shooting in Mexico resort region

    World News CTV News
    CANCUN, Mexico -- Gunmen attacked the state prosecutors' office in this Caribbean resort city Tuesday, and authorities said four people were killed, ratcheting up tensions just a day after a shooting at a music festival in a nearby town left three foreigners and two Mexicans dead. Source
  • With mercy for Manning, attention turns to WikiLeaks head

    World News Toronto Sun
    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s decision Tuesday to commute Chelsea Manning’s sentence brought fresh attention to another figure involved in the Army leaker’s case: Julian Assange. On Twitter last week, Assange’s anti-secrecy site WikiLeaks posted, “If Obama grants Manning clemency Assange will agree to US extradition despite clear unconstitutionality of DoJ case. Source
  • NY scalper struggles to sell Trump inauguration tickets

    World News CTV News
    With three days to go before billionaire businessman Donald Trump becomes America’s 45th president, a New York ticket scalper is getting nervous he won’t sell a pricey pair of tickets before the inauguration. Yossi Rosenberg, a business development manager who reportedly voted for Hillary Clinton, bought the two tickets off Craigslist for $700. Source
  • Is Mexico getting more dangerous for Canadian tourists?

    World News CBC News
    The deaths of five people, including a Canadian man, in Monday's nightclub shooting in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, are tragic — but that doesn't mean it's more dangerous for people to travel to the popular resort area, security experts say. Source
  • Trio of young cougars euthanized in Penticton, B.C.

    Canada News CBC News
    Three young cougars in Penticton, B.C. were euthanized Tuesday after it was discovered their habituated mother had been teaching them to hunt in urban areas. The mother, who officials say shows little to no fear of people, is still on the loose. Source
  • Fugitive wanted in Orlando officer’s fatal shooting captured: Cops

    World News Toronto Sun
    ORLANDO, Fla. — Police say a man wanted in the fatal shootings of his pregnant ex-girlfriend and an Orlando police sergeant has been captured. The Orlando Police Department tweeted Tuesday night that 41-year-old Markeith Loyd is in custody. Source