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China employing ‘gray zone tactics' at contested Second Thomas Shoal, Lowy Institute's Yaacob says

·1 min

China is using ‘gray zone tactics’ against the Philippines at the disputed Second Thomas Shoal reef in the South China Sea. Philippine officials reported that Chinese forces damaged their boats and injured sailors near the Shoal, which is claimed by both countries. Analysts believe China is testing boundaries without triggering a wider conflict. ‘Gray zone tactics’ refer to actions that fall between armed conflict and normal diplomatic or economic activities. The Philippines has not invoked its defense treaty with the US, but experts warn that if China uses kinetic force, it may trigger the treaty. China denies any wrongdoing.