David Shear, assistant defense secretary for Asian-Pacific security affairs, has detailed the U.S. government’s efforts to ensure maritime security in Asia-Pacific, DoD News reported Friday.
Shear said the U.S. will work to safeguard freedom of navigation within the region’s maritime environment through continued engagement, multilateral institutions and diplomacy, Jim Garamone writes.
“We have a vested interest in ensuring that the claims are resolved peacefully and without conflict or coercion,” Shear said during a news conference at the Pentagon.
“However, there are several trends — including rapid military modernization, growing resource demands and territorial maritime disputes — which have the potential to create instability in this vital region.”
Shear noted the Defense Department is collaborating with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to boost information sharing and address challenges related to maritime environment.
U.S. officials also are in talks with Chinese leaders to craft risk-reduction policies and hope to reach an agreement for encounters between aircraft in the region by year-end, he added.