Shak­ing things up

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE -

Thai­land’s Prime Min­is­ter Prayuth Chan-ocha is sched­uled to give the key­note speech at the in­flu­en­tial gath­er­ing of se­nior de­fense of­fi­cials from within and out­side the Asi­aPa­cific re­gion. The 15th di­a­logue, or­ga­nized by the In­ter­na­tional In­sti­tute for Strate­gic Stud­ies, will be held from Fri­day through Sun­day in Sin­ga­pore.

Zhang Jun­she, a se­nior re­searcher at the PLA Naval Mil­i­tary Stud­ies Re­search In­sti­tute, said that the di­a­logue this year has a new twist — the ar­bi­tra­tion sought by the Philip­pines against China re­gard­ing the South China Sea is­sue.

Zhao Xiaozhuo, a re­searcher at the Cen­ter on Chi­naAmer­ica De­fense Re­la­tions at the PLA Academy of Mil­i­tary Sci­ence, said it is com­mon to see con­flict­ing ideas de­bated be­tween Chi­nese and US mil­i­tary of­fi­cials dur­ing the an­nual di­a­logue.

He said Wash­ing­ton will likely use the op­por­tu­nity to pres­sure and iso­late China, es­pe­cially mil­i­tar­ily.

Sun Jian­guo, deputy chief of the Joint Staff De­part­ment of China’s Cen­tral Mil­i­tary Com­mis­sion, will lead a Chi­nese del­e­ga­tion and de­liver a speech dur­ing a ple­nary ses­sion.

The South China Sea, China-US mil­i­tary ties and the Korean Penin­sula are on the top of the Chi­nese del­e­ga­tion’s agenda.

Ruan Zongze, vice-pres­i­dent of the China In­sti­tute of In­ter­na­tional Stud­ies, said, “It is time for both sides (China and the US) to eval­u­ate how far they will al­low the South China Sea is­sue to go.”

It was un­clear whether Sun will have a meet­ing or other con­tacts with the US par­tic­i­pants, who will in­clude Sec­re­tary of De­fense Ash Carter.

Sun is also ex­pected to hold bi­lat­eral and mul­ti­lat­eral meet­ings.

A Brazil­ian chef is vis­it­ing Bei­jing and cre­at­ing some de­light­ful dishes at the fifth an­nual food fes­ti­val or­ga­nized by the Brazil­ian Em­bassy. > p15 mil­lion, the latest in a se­ries of over­seas ac­qui­si­tions. > p13

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