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China puts Asian neighbors on notice about relying on U.S. security umbrella

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Asian countries should be on guard against the “danger” of feeling they can “do whatever they want” because of the U.S. military presence in the region, the Chinese Communist Party’s People’s Daily said in a commentary.

The opinion piece said it was understandable that some Asian countries may be uncomfortable with China’s rise and emphasized that the government in Beijing was working for “peaceful solutions” to conflicts such as territorial disputes in the South China Sea. The commentary comes as countries such as the Philippines and Vietnam are increasingly voicing concerns over China’s claims to the waters.

“Asia remains a fertile ground for a Cold War mentality,” the commentary said. “Asia is advancing, will never return to the Cold War, and China must have an important role in the future of Asian security.”

Competing claims to thethreaten to sour ties between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations members Vietnam, the Philippines and Malaysia as the countries compete over oil, gas and fisheries resources. China, citing historical evidence such as pottery shards, claims a tongue-shaped swath of the sea demarked by nine dashes that extends hundreds of miles south from Hainan Island to the equatorial waters off the coast of Borneo.

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