US claims China’s ‘manipulation’ of Mekong is ‘urgent challenge’ for Southeast Asia

A senior US diplomat on Thursday said China’s “manipulation” of water flows in the Mekong River – currently at record lows – was an immediate challenge to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, signalling the issue could be on the agenda in a regional forum next week.
The comments by David Stilwell, the assistant secretary of state for East Asia and the Pacific, are the latest evidence that the 4,350km river, on which 60 million Southeast Asians depend, has become a new front in the US-China rivalry.

Bhavan Jaipragas