US warship's South China Sea passage sparks Beijing warning

Created 20 January 2022
  • PDF
Editor Choice
Share
(0 votes, average 0 out of 5)

A U.S. warship sailed through the South China Sea on Thursday, sparking a warning from China's military as tensions between the superpowers remain high.
US warship's South China Sea passage sparks Beijing warning

The American navy said the USS Benfold "asserted navigational rights and freedoms in the vicinity of the Paracel Islands, consistent with international law."

The Southern Theater Command of the People's Liberation Army said the U.S. ship had "illegally" entered what Beijing regards as its waters.

The PLA "organized naval and air forces to engage in tracking and monitoring as well as to warn and drive (the destroyer) away," its statement added.

China claims almost all of the South China Sea, through which trillions of dollars in trade passes annually.

Beijing has ignored a 2016 ruling by The Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration that its historical claim is without basis.

Led by the United States, multiple Western navies conduct "freedom of navigation operations," known in military circles as FONOPs, to assert the idea that the South China Sea is an international waterway.

Thursday's passage by the USS Benfold was the first declared FONOP of the year.

It came a week after the United States laid out its most detailed case yet against Beijing's "unlawful" claims in the South China Sea, rejecting both the geographic and historical justifications.

In a 47-page research paper, the State Department's Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs said China had no basis under international law for claims that have put Beijing on a collision course with the Philippines, Vietnam and other Southeast Asian nations.

China has rejected the report.

Over the years Beijing has steadily cemented its control of key islands and atolls in the South China Sea through land reclamation and the construction of military facilities that have alarmed many of its neighbours.


Source: VNE

Maybe You Also Interesting :

» New US-Việt Nam Cooperation Centre opens in Hà Nội

US Ambassador to Việt Nam Marc Knapper, Assistant Foreign Minister Đỗ Hùng Việt, Acting President of Diplomatic Academy of Việt Nam Phạm Lan Dung...

» Australia's new Labor govt says China relations to remain challenging

Australia's relations with China will remain challenging, Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles said on Tuesday (May 24) amid reports the Chinese premier has...

» HCMC real estate market gloomy in Q2

The real estate market is slowing down with demand on both primary and secondary markets declining, after the government tightened regulations and launched...