China protests U.S. ship near South China Sea island

  • China protests U.S. ship near South China Sea island

China protests U.S. ship near South China Sea island

His comments came amidst reports from Washington that a US Navy destroyer carried out a "freedom of navigation operation" yesterday, coming within 12 nautical miles of an artificial island built up by China in the South China Sea.

Malacañang on Friday chose to take a tactful stance on the matter of the passage of the United States destroyer USS John S. McCain close to the contested Mischief [Panganiban] Reef in the Spratly Islands west of Palawan.

In July, a USA warship sailed near a disputed island in the South China Sea claimed by China, Taiwan, Vietnam.

Tensions on the Korean Peninsula have risen recently after North Korea carried out two nuclear tests past year and two ICBM tests last month, prompting a strong round of United Nations sanctions. Firing back at criticism of China's activities, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Monday that China had "stopped or already completed land reclamation" on its holdings in the South China Sea two years ago.

However, the US officials said that the USS John S. McCain sailed past an island in the disputed Spratly chain in the South China Sea, which is the third mission under the Trump administration.

China and the U.S. maintain different interpretations on worldwide law as applied to the operation of warships, and Beijing has ignored a Hague arbitration court's ruling that invalidated much of its South China Sea claim. "But China's own reclamation work did not end in mid-2015 with the completion of its artificial islands in the Spratlys", the think tank said on its website.

"However, some parties from outside continue to meddle in the region under the guise of free navigation", Geng said.

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

"They happen off the coast of Canada" and "in the waters off shore of our major allies, friends, partners all around the world", she said. "The operations are conducted in accordance with global law", she said.

China had the largest volume of exports passing through the disputed territory, or $US874 billion, and therefore the most to lose if commercial trade routes were disrupted by conflict.

Although the final joint communique decried militarization in the South China Sea, it neither mentioned Manila's arbitration win nor called for a legally binding code of conduct in the disputed waters.

"The US military's provocative actions will only encourage the Chinese military to further strengthen the defence capacity building and firmly defend national sovereignty and security", said Wu.

The SSF is also responsible for keeping an eye on the resource-rich South China Sea where China is involved in maritime disputes with the Philippines and Vietnam, among other nations.