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ASEAN tensions flare in territorial dispute

Rifts over the issue of the South China Sea emerge between ASEAN members and China at a summit meeting in Phnom Penh.

PT1M19S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-29mt9 620 349

Phnom Penh: South-East Asian nations have urged China to quickly begin top-level talks over tense sea territorial disputes, after forging a united position on how to tackle their giant neighbour.

Leaders of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations made their bid to break the impasse over China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, as Chinese premier Wen Jiabao arrived in Cambodia for an annual summit.

ASEAN secretary-general Surin Pitsuwan told reporters after the South-East Asian leaders held their talks in Phnom Penh the ASEAN side is ready and committed and waiting for China to come forward.

A Cambodian official adjusts uniform of a member of honor guards.

A Cambodian official adjusts uniform of a member of honor guards before an official welcoming ceremony for Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012.

He says the ASEAN leaders want to begin more formal and official talks on a legally binding code of conduct, aimed at easing tensions in the South China Sea as soon as possible.

In July, ASEAN's regional forum ended without issuing a joint statement because of differences among about how to handle territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

AAP