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Thank you for the accommodation, honourable senators, I was absent at the time when this item was called, due to a special sitting of the Selection Committee.

Honourable senators, I rise in this chamber today to speak to this motion as moved by Senator Ngo, as it is an issue that, if left unchecked, could have severe global consequences: The maritime territorial dispute in the South China Sea where tensions between rival countries have been escalating in recent years.

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