Australia Sends Largest Warship to Military Drills with Philippines and US

Voice of America News reports: “Australia’s biggest warship heads to the Philippines Monday where tensions with Beijing have escalated in recent days over disputed waters in the South China Sea. HMAS Canberra will take part in joint military exercises with U.S. forces and the Philippines.

The South China Sea is one of the world’s most important waterways. It links the Indian Ocean to the Pacific and is a critical shipping channel with rich fishing grounds. It could also harbor valuable deposits of natural resources.

Neighboring countries have contested the region for years. China has laid claim to large swathes, which has angered competing claimants, including Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam. Flashpoints – big and small – are common…”

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