Tensions between China and the United States have intensified, and disputes in the South China Sea have resumed. On Thursday (24th), the Chinese military claimed that a U.S. warship trespassed in its territorial waters; the Chinese Foreign Ministry called it a provocation, while the U.S. refuted the Chinese claim. What happened? What do the two sides say?
(Voice of Deutsche Welle Chinese Network) Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s southern theater spokesman Tian Junli said on Thursday (March 23) that the US guided missile destroyer USS Milius “illegally intruded into China’s Xisha territorial waters” On the same day, he refuted the Chinese statement.
Tian Junli said that the U.S. warship trespassed in China‘s Xisha waters “undermining the peace and stability of the South China Sea region.”
The U.S. Navy disputed the Chinese statement on the same day, saying that the U.S. warship was only conducting “routine operations” and had not been expelled. “The United States will continue to fly, sail and operate wherever international law allows,” the U.S. Seventh Fleet statement said.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin condemned the U.S. on the same day, saying: “The U.S. should immediately stop such provocative and infringing actions.”
According to a Reuters report on the 23rd, tensions between China and the United States in the South China Sea have been rising, while the United States is strengthening relations with allies in the Asia-Pacific region to counter China as Beijing seeks to advance its territorial claims.
China and the United States have had disputes in the Xisha area several times,July last yearThe Chinese military also stated that the USS Benfold trespassed in the area and was driven away. The U.S. military also refuted it, stating that the U.S. purpose is to safeguard the freedom of navigation and the legal right to use the sea endowed by international law.
The United States said at the time that “as long as some countries continue to claim and advocate restrictions beyond their international law authorization, the United States will continue to defend the rights and freedoms of the seas enjoyed by all people.”
In January last year, the Benfu also entered the watersThe Chinese side has expressed strong dissatisfaction with this, and stated that the Xisha Islands are Chinese territory. According to the “Law of the People’s Republic of China on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone”, the actions of the US side were not the “freedom of navigation” it claimed, but “infringement of China‘s sovereignty and endangering the South China Sea.” serious provocation to peace and stability”.
The issue of the ownership of the Xisha Islands is also one of the disputes over the sovereignty of the South China Sea. Taiwan and Vietnam both claim their sovereignty. China and Vietnam even broke out the Xisha naval battle in 1974 because of this. China has actually engaged in construction and development on the islands in the area.
According to a Taiwan Central News Agency report on the 23rd, when the United States and Japan held joint maritime training recently, the US military sent the Milius to conduct tactical military training with the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force.
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