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Philippines and Japan hold historic naval drills in flashpoint waters
News.yahoo.com Two Japanese destroyers and one of the Philippines' newest warships began historic naval exercises in the flashpoint South China Sea on Tuesday, showcasing a deepening alliance aimed at countering a rising China.
The day-long war games, the first bilateral naval exercises between the former World War II enemies, took place less than 300 kilometres (186 miles) from a Philippine-claimed shoal now under Chinese control.
Philippine authorities insisted the exercises were merely focused on building military capabilities, but security analysts said they were clearly a signal to China over bitter maritime territorial disputes.
"First they demonstrate that China's Pacific neighbours are beginning to balance against China," professor Michael Tkacik, a foreign policy expert at the Texas-based Stephen F. Austin State University, told AFP...
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