U.S. Defense Chief Says China's Island-building Erodes Security

U.S. Defense Secretary, Ash Carter, warned on Saturday that Beijing's island-building in the South China Sea is undermining security in the Asia-Pacific as he called for a diplomatic push to solve the territorial dispute that is driving China's effort. Carter, speaking to top defense officials from across the Asia-Pacific, acknowledged that several countries had created outposts in the region's disputed islands, but he said the scope of China's activity created uncertainty about its future plans. Carter noted that China has reclaimed over 2,000 acres, more than all other claimants combined and China did so in only the last 18 months. His remarks came a day after the Pentagon confirmed reports that China had put mobile artillery at one of its reclaimed islands in the South China Sea, a move that Republican Senator John McCain said was "disturbing and escalatory."



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