News / USA

US, China Discuss South China Sea on Final Day of Bali Summit

U.S. President Barack Obama meets with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on the sidelines of the East Asia Summit in Nusa Dua, in Bali, Indonesia, Saturday, Nov. 19, 2011.
U.S. President Barack Obama meets with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on the sidelines of the East Asia Summit in Nusa Dua, in Bali, Indonesia, Saturday, Nov. 19, 2011.

U.S. President Barack Obama met in Bali Saturday with China's Premier Wen Jiabao as leaders attending the East Asia Summit brought their meetings to a close.

U.S. officials say the two discussed regional tensions over the South China Sea.

The Obama-Wen meeting, announced by the White House on short notice Saturday morning, occurred before leaders at the summit held a formal plenary session and a working lunch.

Neither commented before or after. But U.S. National Security Advisor Tom Donilon said they spoke briefly about the South China Sea issue following up on a conversation from the previous day, and that there would be more discussion among leaders later.

In remarks to ASEAN leaders on Friday, Premier Wen said solutions should not involve "outside forces. . . under any pretext." The comments were widely seen as directed at the U.S.-Australia agreement to base 2,500 U.S. Marines in Australia.

Speaking to reporters Saturday, National Security Adviser Donilon reiterated that the U.S. takes no sides in the South China Sea issue, but believes disputes need to be resolved peacefully.

Donilon said, "The U.S. has an interest in the freedom of navigation, the free flow of commerce, the peaceful resolution of disputes. We don't have a claim, we don't take sides in the claims, but we do as a global maritime power have an interest in seeing these principles applied broadly."

Donilon said he would not comment on the specifics of any nation's claim, but did note that the South China Sea issue was raised by ASEAN countries in discussions Friday.

More broadly, he was asked whether what one reporter called the "sharp tone" Mr. Obama has sounded during his Asia-Pacific trip could lead elements in China's military to believe the U.S. is attempting to isolate or contain China.

Donilon said President Obama has made a point of repeatedly welcoming China's peaceful rise and economic success, and anything he has said during his trip has "nothing to do with isolating or containing anybody."

Donilon said, "The U.S. goal in the region is to have a stable, peaceful, and economically prosperous region and that is in the interests of everyone in the region, including the Chinese."

Donilon said the United States has been "very direct" with China about its plans in the Asia-Pacific region, adding Washington has worked to deepen the "military to military conversation" to achieve more transparency regarding military plans and intentions.

China's regional economic role and its strategic intentions in the South China Sea have been a major focus at this summit as well as during Mr. Obama's nine-day Asia-Pacific trip that emphasized the importance of regional trade.

Mr. Obama said this in his speech to Australian troops and U.S. Marines in Darwin this past week after the announcement of a new military access agreement.

The president said, "There is another reason we are deepening our alliance here. This region has some of the busiest sea lanes in the world, which are critical to all our economies."

National Security Adviser Donilon called the overall U.S. relationship with China complicated. But he said Beijing recognizes that the U.S. is a principle Pacific power intent on meeting its obligations and commitments to partners and allies.

At the same time, he said the U.S. is engaged in an "important conversation" with China about economic issues not limited to currency policies, including what he called areas that "impair the fair access" by the United States and other countries to China's economy.

You May Like

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Judge Declares Washington DC Ban on Public Handguns Unconstitutional

Ruling overturns capital city's prohibition on carrying guns in public More

Pricey Hepatitis C Drug Draws Criticism

Activists are using the International AIDS Conference to criticize drug companies for charging high prices for life-saving therapies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid