US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo yesterday announced nearly US$300 million (S$410 million) for security cooperation in the Indo-Pacific as his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi staged a robust defence of China's military build-up in the South China Sea. Both men were in Singapore for Asean-related meetings.
Mr Pompeo said the funds, which were seen as a clear signal of US commitment to the region, would go to maritime security, humanitarian assistance and peacekeeping development, and countering transnational threats. The amount would be in addition to US$113 million in economic initiatives unveiled earlier last week.
Mr Wang, in the meantime, described China's militarisation in the South China Sea as acts of self-defence prompted by US show of military strength in the disputed waters.
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