According to a senior Asian diplomat, the United States and Malaysia had talks to base U.S. spy planes out of Sabah to provide coverage for the South China Sea. Earlier this week a top U.S. Navy officer said that Malaysia offered to let the U.S. use one of its bases for some new surveillance planes, but no flights have been approved. The Asian diplomat wanted to remain anonymous. He said that Malaysia was reaching out to the U.S. because of China’s increasing military power. Putrajaya has not yet confirmed the offer; the Defense Minister has denied the issue.
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