China Condemns US for 'Provocative' Actions in South China Sea

‘Maneuvered to prevent collision’: Chinese destroyer chases USS Decatur in South China Sea

These types of missions, often a thorn in Beijing's side, demonstrate that the USA does not recognize China's extensive and previously discredited territorial claims in the South China Sea.

The US vessel was conducting a freedom of navigation operation near the disputed Spratly Islands and was forced to alter its path "to prevent a collision", US media report.

The Chinese Defense Ministry on Tuesday voiced its "resolute opposition" to the US operation, saying it "severely threatened China's sovereignty and safety and impaired regional peace and stability".

"The US has repeatedly sent warships into the territorial waters near Chinese reefs and islands in the South China Sea", it said.

In this October 13, 2016, photo provided by the U.S. Navy, guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur operates in the South China Sea as part of the Bonhomme Richard Expeditionary Strike Group.

The Chinese military on Tuesday voiced firm opposition to a US Navy warship's entry into waters around China's islands and reefs in the South China Sea. Chinese officials rescinded the invitation, the USA official said.

The Pentagon defended the action Sunday as part of its freedom of navigation missions, which are meant to enforce the right of free passage for USA vessels in global waters as "routine" operations.

China's defense ministry accused the United States of traveling near islands claimed by Beijing and ordered its ship to force the Decatur away from the Spratly Islands. "China is strongly dissatisfied with and firmly opposed to that", Chunying said.

A US Navy vessel, the USS Decatur, sailed within 12 nautical miles of Gaven and Johnson reefs in the disputed South China Sea on Sunday, prompting China to send a destroyer close to the US warship, almost resulting in a collision.


A US defense official told The Japan Times on Sunday that the Decatur conducted the freedom of navigation operation under the right of "innocent passage". Beijing considers this Chinese territory.

According to another USA official, the Chinese warship was initially about 500 yards on the Decatur's port side then moved ahead of the Decatur and cut across the American destroyer's bow.

"As we have for decades, our forces will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere worldwide law allows".

During a routine surveillance mission near the Chinese coast, a US Navy EP-3E Aries II spy plane collided with a Chinese F-8 fighter jet that was closely tailing it.

At a news conference last week, President Donald Trump said his often-mentioned friendship with Chinese leader Xi Jinping may have come to an end.

Australia has even announced that, in the face of a possible conflict, they will be re-opening a World War II-era naval base on New Guinea in order to more effectively project force in the South China Sea.

China has canceled two high-level security meetings with usa defence officials in the past week as tensions between the United States and China rise.

Also last week China refused to port the USS Wasp in Hong Kong as another sign of the growing tensions between Washington and Beijing.

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