United States takes a strong position on how South and East China Seas “claims are pursued and how those disputes are going to be resolved,” Secretary of State John Kerry said at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, DC.
He added that agreeing to disagree is not a choice “when it comes to maritime security, especially in the South and East China Seas.”
Kerry said that the US government is “deeply concerned about mounting tension in the South China Sea and we consistently urge all the parties to pursue claims in accordance with international law, to exercise self-restraint, to peacefully resolve disputes, and to make rapid, meaningful progress to complete a code of conduct that will help reduce the potential for conflict in the years to come.”
“The United States will work, without getting involved in the merits of the claim, on helping that process to be effectuated, because doing so brings greater stability, brings more opportunity for cooperation in other areas.”
The US Secretary of State emphasized that good US-China relationship will not only benefit them individually but the entire world. Kerry said that one of the main components of re-balance to Asia is strengthening U.S-China relations. “The sheer size of China and its economy, coupled with the rapid and significant changes that are taking place there, means that our relationship by definition has vast potential.”
Kerry also cleared out that “the United States will never shy away from articulating our deeply held values or defending our interests, our allies, and our partners throughout the region. And China is well aware of that.”