US says room for sanctions in response to China in South China Sea

US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs David Stilwell said 'nothing is off the table' where China is concerned. — Reuters pic
US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs David Stilwell said 'nothing is off the table' where China is concerned. — Reuters pic

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WASHINGTON, July 14 — The top US diplomat for East Asia said today that the United States could respond with sanctions against Chinese officials and enterprises involved in coercion in the South China Sea.

“Nothing is off the table ... there is room for that,” David Stilwell, the assistant secretary for East Asia, told a Washington think tank when asked if sanctions were a possible US response to Chinese actions.

Stilwell spoke a day after the United States rejected China’s claims to offshore resources in most of the South China Sea as “completely unlawful,” a stance Beijing said raised tensions in the region. — Reuters

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