Philippino Island Violation Brings Tension in the South China Sea

China has accused the Philippines of violating a 13-year-old informal code of conduct in the South China Sea with its building work on disputed islets, firing back again after repeated criticism of China's own construction work. China and the 10-member Association of South East Asian Nations signed an agreement in 2002 to refrain from occupying uninhabited reefs and shoals in the sea, and from building new structures that would complicate disputes. In a statement released just before midnight on Monday, China's Foreign Ministry urged the Philippines to stop its "malicious hyping and provocation" on the dispute, whose basis, it said, was Manila's illegal occupation of certain Chinese islands.



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