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Aquino 'wants peaceful Spratlys outcome'

President Benigno Aquino yesterday repeated his call for claimant countries to the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea to arrive at a peaceful solution to the dispute. He said such a meeting would be "complementary" to his call for members of ASEAN to arrive at a "common and collective position" on a code of conduct in the South China Sea before meeting with China, one of the claimants. Other than the Philippines and China, the Spratlys is being claimed in whole or in part by Malaysia, Vietnam, Brunei and Taiwan. The islands are estimated to be the world's fourth-largest reserve bed of oil and natural gas.

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