Never miss a story

Get subscribed to our newsletter


×
voa

Indian Naval Ship Kirch.

A series of voyages by multiple Western allies in mid-2021 through a disputed Asian sea will incite China, the waterway's largest claimant, to shadow the foreign ships, hit back at the countries behind them and possibly hold a live-fire drill, analysts say.

At least eight countries have indicated since late July plans to send navy vessels into the resource-rich South China Sea, which stretches from Hong Kong to Borneo Island, in support of keeping it open internationally rather than ceding it to Chinese control.


The HMS Defender destroyer, part of a British carrier strike group, reached the South China Sea last month, domestic media reported. It's scheduled to join vessels from France, Japan, India, Australia, New Zealand and the United States for joint exercises near the sea. India for its part plans to send four ships over two months, according to its Ministry of Defense website.

France, the U.K. and Canada sent ships to the same sea earlier in the year.

On August 2, Germany's Bayern warship set out for six months in Asia including the South China Sea, the German defense minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer said. "The message is clear: we are standing up for our values and interests together with our partners and allies," she said in a Twitter post.

voyages alarm China. A world arbitration court ruled in 2016 that China had no legal basis for its "nine-dash line" that it uses to back a claim to about 90% of the 3.5 million-square-kilometer waterway, but officials in Beijing rejected the decision.

European and Indian voyages alarm China.voa


These voyages alarm China. A world arbitration court ruled in 2016 that China had no legal basis for its "nine-dash line" that it uses to back a claim to about 90% of the 3.5 million-square-kilometer waterway, but officials in Beijing rejected the decision.

In response to the latest foreign visits, China will start by protesting diplomatically or through domestic English-language media, said Derek Grossman, senior analyst with the U.S.-based Rand Corp. research organization. It could get tougher by following the foreign ships, he told VOA.

"That's easy to complain about it in public through official and unofficial channels," Grossman said. "There's going to be some complaining, but I think sort of at the higher end of the spectrum you can see Chinese ships tailing German and Indian, British ships in the South China Sea."

None of the countries sending ships this summer claims the sea, which is prized for fisheries and undersea fossil fuel reserves. China contests the sea instead with Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan, Vietnam and the Philippines.

Backed by Asia's strongest armed forces, China has rattled other claimants by landfilling islets for military installations. Beijing occasionally sends vessels into the maritime exclusive economic zones of its rivals.

India, Japan and European countries are following a U.S. lead by sending warships, some analysts say. Washington, a superpower rival of Beijing, doubled the number of its "Freedom of Navigation Operations" in the sea in 2019. U.S. officials hope to stop China's expansion in the contested sea, where some of the smaller countries are historic American allies.

India's defense ministry said its ship deployment "seeks to underscore the operational reach, peaceful presence and solidarity with friendly countries towards ensuring good order in the maritime domain."

Chinese defense planners should view the foreign ship movement as "shows of flag" with coordination such as "parallel cruising" rather than a direct military threat, said Alexander Huang, strategic studies professor at Tamkang University in Taiwan. The People's Liberation Army Navy may respond with more missile tests without hitting anyone, he said.

This month China already announced it was planning live fire, "aircraft carrier killer" anti-ship ballistic missiles exercises in the sea.(VOA/HP)


Popular

Unsplash

Feminism itself is nothing but a simple movement that pursues equal rights for women (including transwomen) and against misogyny both external and internal.

"In India, to be born as a man is a crime, to question a woman is an atrocious crime, and this all because of those women who keep suppressing men in the name of feminism."

Feminism, a worldwide movement that started to establish, define and defend equal rights for women in all sections- economically, politically, and socially. India, being a patriarchal society gives a gender advantage to the men in the society thus, Indian feminists sought to fight against the culture-specific issue for women in India. Feminism itself is nothing but a simple movement that pursues equal rights for women (including transwomen) and against misogyny both external and internal. It states nowhere that women should get more wages than men, that women deserve more respect than men, that's pseudo-feminism.

Keep Reading Show less
wikimedia commons

Yakshi statue by Kanayi Kunjiraman at Malampuzha garden, Kerala

Kerala is a land of many good things. It has an abundance of nature, culture, art, and food. It is also a place of legend and myth, and is known for its popular folklore, the legend of Yakshi. This is not a popular tale outside the state, but it is common knowledge for travellers, especially those who fare through forests at night.

The legend of the yakshi is believed to be India's equivalent of the Romanian Dracula, except of course, the Yakshi is a female. Many Malayalis believe that the Yakshi wears a white saree and had long hair. She has a particular fragrance, which is believed to be the fragrance of the Indian devil-tree flowers. She seduces travellers with her beauty, and kills them brutally.

Keep Reading Show less
Pinterest

Ancient India not only made mentions of homosexuality but accepted it as well.


The LGBTQ+ acronym stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and others. In India LGBTQ+ community also include a specific social group, part religious cult, and part caste: the Hijras. They are culturally defined either as "neither men nor women" or as men who become women by adopting women's dress and behavior. Section 377 of the India Penal code that criminalized all sexual acts "against the order of nature" i.e. engaging in oral sex or anal sex along with other homosexual activities were against the law, ripping homosexual people off of their basic human rights. Thus, the Indian Supreme Court ruled a portion of Section 377 unconstitutional on 6th September 2018.

Keep reading... Show less