White House urges dialogue, not intimidation, in dispute over Chinese oil rig

WASHINGTON Wed May 14, 2014 12:10pm EDT

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WASHINGTON May 14 (Reuters) - The White House said on Wednesday that a dispute in the South China Sea over erection of a Chinese oil rig about 120 miles (193 km) off the Vietnam coast needs to be resolved through dialogue, not intimidation.

Spokesman Jay Carney said the United States is not a party to the dispute but said President Barack Obama on a recent Asia tour had repeatedly stressed the need for peaceful dialogue on various disputes involving China and the South China Sea.

The dispute over the South China sea and anti-China violence in tightly controlled Vietnam have raised fears of an escalation in tensions between the Communist neighbors. (Reporting By Steve Holland and Mark Felsenthal; Editing by Bill Trott)

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