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International relations

ASEAN makes concession to China

Summit statement drops references to South China Sea reclamation, arbitration

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Leaders pose during the 30th Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in Manila on April 29.   © Reuters

MANILA -- In a nod to Beijing's lobbying, Southeast Asian leaders concluded a summit here on Saturday by avoiding references to China's island-building in the South China Sea and to a landmark arbitration ruling that rendered such projects illegal.

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