The United States, Japan and Australia have urged China not to construct military outposts and reclaim land in the disputed South China Sea, in a strong show of support for Southeast Asian nations that have territorial disputes with Beijing in the resource-rich area.
A joint statement by the three allies, issued late Monday, ironically fills the vacuum created by Southeast Asia's main grouping, which during its meeting of foreign ministers on Sunday failed to take a stand against China because of disunity among themselves.
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