US worried by China-Taiwan tensions, possible Korean war

Associated Press

Hong Kong, February 1:

The top Asian issues that worry the US Navy are the potential for war in the Koreas, China-Taiwan tensions and the growing friction between China and Japan, the commander of the US Seventh Fleet said today. Vice Admiral Jonathan Greenert said another concern “that keeps us awake at night” was the threat of terrorism in Southeast Asia.

The Koreas were at the top of Greenert’s list of security problems. “Although war in Korea is less likely today than perhaps at any other time, the consequences are high,” Greenert said in a lunch speech to the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong.

The No 2 issue was tensions between Taiwan and China. He said the US hoped to encourage China and Taiwan to resolve their differences peacefully. America also wanted to discourage the rivals from unilaterally changing the status quo, he added. Greenert said they were

concerned about increasing China-Japan tensions fuelled by disputes over territory and drilling rights. “We are clearly allies with Japan, and we would like to maintain great relations with China,” he said.