For Tetsuo Kotani, a research fellow at the Japan Institute of International Affairs, China’s future behavior in the South China Sea could serve as an indication of how Beijing would resolve its longstanding dispute with Japan in the East China Sea.
Kotani said he had engaged in discussions with US and Japanese military officials on the possibility of holding joint US-Japan maritime surveillance in the South China Sea to help stabilize the situation.
However, he did not comment on whether Tokyo and Washington were receptive to the idea.
Assistant US Secretary of State for East Asia and the Pacific Kurt Campbell gave the keynote speech during lunch.
Asked by the Taipei Times whether Washington worried about the possibility of cooperation between Taiwan and China in the South China Sea disputes, Campbell guardedly said that US officials had engaged in talks — in an unofficial capacity — with their Taiwanese counterparts, adding that Taipei had been “very careful” with its language on the subject.
Campbell comments nevertheless provided confirmation that the US was liaising with Taiwan on the matter.