Tensions easing in the South China Sea? – CNN.com

Hong Kong (CNN) — China has agreed to hold formal talks with its southeast Asian neighbors about establishing a “code of conduct” to ease maritime tensions in the South China Sea, a major step forward in the long-running dispute.

A statement issued after a weekend meeting of foreign ministers from the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China in Brunei, said the countries “aim to reach a conclusion of a Code of Conduct in the South China Sea, which will service to enhance peace, stability and prosperity in the region.”

The South China Sea is home to messy mix of rival territorial claims, with China, Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam disputing sovereignty of island chains and nearby waters. The areas in dispute include fertile fishing grounds and potentially rich reserves of undersea natural resources.

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via Tensions easing in the South China Sea? – CNN.com.

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