Singapore may prove a tough nut for China to crack over regional security

File photo of armored troop carriers, belonging to Singapore, detained at a cargo terminal in Hong Kong

From Reuters:

“As the impounding of Singaporean troop carriers in Hong Kong exposes rising tensions between China and Singapore, the Lion City is unlikely to budge on core security interests concerning Beijing – its military relationship with Taiwan, worries over the South China Sea and its hosting of the U.S. military.

Singaporean officials, retired military officers and analysts stress that even while Singapore publicly plays down the spat, its leadership will not easily give in to what it sees as intimidation on matters of national importance.

All three points – Taiwan, the South China Sea and its deepening relationship with the Pentagon – reflect positions refined over decades as the tiny island state seeks to secure itself in a region now undergoing historic strategic shifts amid China’s rise.

But those shifts mean the pressure is intensifying and Singapore risks being isolated as neighbors including the Philippines, a U.S. ally, and Malaysia tilt towards Beijing.”

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