More footage emerges from 2018 near collision of US and China warships in South China Sea
Beijing announced &# 171; building up tension&# 187; in the Paracel Islands area
The US Navy ship sailed Friday in the Chinese-controlled Paracel Islands in the South China Sea as part of an operation to ensure freedom of navigation. This information was confirmed in the Navy, the operation was the first such mission, carried out already under the administration of Joe Biden..
The Chinese military condemned the move, saying that Beijing sent the necessary forces and means to monitor the ship and prevent possible violations of the sea space..
This busy transport crossroads in the South China Sea is one of many tensions between the U.S. and the PRC, including the trade war, sanctions, the Hong Kong situation, and relations with Taiwan..
Official Beijing is showing extreme dissatisfaction with the fact that American ships have repeatedly passed by the islands that the PRC occupies and controls in the South China Sea. Beijing claims to have sovereignty over the Paracel Islands and accuses Washington of “deliberately escalating tensions”.
The 7th US Navy Fleet said that the USS John S. McCain “has confirmed the rights and freedoms of navigation in the Paracel Islands area in accordance with international law.”. The Freedom of Navigation Operation protects the rights, freedoms and legal use of the sea space recognized by international law, challenging “illegal restrictions on the innocent passage of ships imposed by China, Taiwan and Vietnam,” the statement said..
The Southern Command of the People’s Liberation Army of China said that the American ship entered the so-called territorial waters of the Paracel Islands without permission, “encroaching on the sovereignty and security of China.”.
The United States is “deliberately destroying the favorable atmosphere of peace, friendship and cooperation in the South China Sea,” added Beijing.
China took full control of the islands in 1974 after a short military conflict with South Vietnamese troops. Vietnam, like Taiwan, still claims these islands.
Malaysia, Brunei and the Philippines have claims to other parts of the South China Sea, where China is building artificial islands and even establishing air bases on some of these islands..
The destroyer John S. McCain passed the Taiwan Strait earlier this week, which also sparked an angry reaction from Beijing..
A US carrier strike group entered the South China Sea last month for what the Navy says is routine operations..
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