“We are making clear: Beijing’s claims to offshore resources across most of the South China Sea are completely unlawful,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a July 13 statement.
The Philippines and Vietnam, among the most vocal critics of Chinese assertiveness, could benefit from that stance but will move cautiously, said Greg Poling of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.
“They aren’t going to stick their necks in a noose until they see real follow-through from Washington,” Poling said.
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