After a United States warship purposely sailed near one of the most closely watched islands in the South China Sea to exercise freedom of navigation and challenge China’s vast territorial claims, China strongly condemned the US, wrote OC Register.
USS Curtis Wilbur, the missle destroyer, sailed within 12 miles of Triton Island in the Paracel chain “to challenge excessive maritime claims of parties that claim Paracel Islands,” without informing the three claimants beforehand, Defense Department spokesman Mark Wright stated in Washington, stated foxnews.com.
Chinese armed forces will take anything that measures, “necessary to safeguard China’s sovereignty and security, no matter what provocations the US may take,” China’s Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun explained.
“The so-called freedom of navigation plans and acts that the United States has upheld for many years in reality do not accord with generally recognized international law,” Lu Kang, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, told a daily news briefing, according to timesofindia.indiatimes.com.
In addition, “ignores numerous littoral states’ sovereignty and security and maritime rights, seriously harming relevant regional peace and stability,” he included.
“Its essence is to push the United States maritime hegemony in the name of freedom of navigation, which has always been resolutely opposed by most of the international community, especially certain developing nations. What the United States has done is dangerous and irresponsible.”
The US navy tried a similar experiment in October in which the guided-missile destroyer Lassen sailed close to one of China’s man-made islands, also drawing a rebuke from Beijing, explained timesofindia.indiantimes.com.