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International relations

China lobbies ASEAN for joint military drills without US

Beijing looks to weaken American position in South China Sea

The Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning participates in a military drill in the western Pacific Ocean. Beijing seeks joint drills with ASEAN to increase its influence in the South China Sea.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- China has called for conducting joint military exercises with Southeast Asia's regional bloc in the South China Sea without the U.S., seeking to diminish American military influence in the Asia-Pacific region while expanding its own.

The proposal was included in a "negotiating text" for a code of conduct in the South China Sea announced at a meeting Thursday of foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and China.

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