World News

Palace sees nothing 'objectionable' with USA destroyer in South China Sea

Palace sees nothing 'objectionable' with USA destroyer in South China Sea

"It would be best if this apparent evidence can be vetted for accuracy if only to prove the trust and confidence that all disputants over the territory in South China Sea.need to have in each other moving forward", said President Rodrigo Duterte's spokesman. That occurred around Triton Island in the Paracel archipelago, which is claimed by China, Vietnam and Taiwan.

Similar U.S. military operations took place in May and July.

He added that the Chinese navy identified the U.S. warship, issued a warning and finally expelled it from the area, without giving further details.

The United States has criticized China's construction of islands and build-up of military facilities in the sea, and is concerned they could be used to restrict free nautical movement.

This is the third time that the US Navy has conducted a "freedom of navigation operation" or "fonop" under the Donald Trump presidency.

"And the point of that is to demonstrate that the United States will continue to fly, sail and operate wherever global law allows".

McCain sailed near Mischief Reef, claimed by China, Taiwan, Vietnam and Philippines.

China's foreign ministry said the operation had violated worldwide and Chinese law and seriously harmed Beijing's sovereignty and security.

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McCain destroyer sailed within six nautical miles of Mischief Reef - an artificial island built by China - on Thursday (Aug 10) as part of a "freedom of navigation" operation, a USA official said. "We told them we are a United States (ship) conducting routine operations in global waters".

"China has indisputable sovereignty of the Nansha Islands and its adjacent waters and such a move severely undermines China's sovereignty and security, and severely endangers the safety of frontline personnel of both sides", he said.

In the previous administration, the Philippines was among the major voices in the regional bloc calling for stronger wording in ASEAN statements against China and its aggression in the South China Sea. Beijing has reclaimed land in massive dredging operations, turning sandbars into islands equipped with airfields, ports and lighthouses. Since 1985 Brunei has claimed a continental shelf that overlaps a southern reef but has not made any formal claim to the reef.

"China has the firm determination to safeguard its territorial sovereignty and maritime interests", Geng said.

United States officials admitted earlier that USS John S. McCain sailed in a freedom of navigation operation within 12 nautical miles of Mischief/Panganiban Reef while a US P-3 patrol plane flew overhead.

The Defense Ministry said U.S. and Chinese military relations are generally "stable" but said such actions foster mistrust between the nations.

The Foreign Ministry also said tensions have eased because of regional efforts.

"China is very displeased with this and will bring up the issue with the USA side،" he added.


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