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China, US Navy spar over guided-missile destroyer in South China Sea



China’s defense ministry expressed frustration on Friday that it once again had to monitor and drive away the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Milius which entered its territorial waters in the South China Sea close to the Paracel Islands.

“We sternly demand the U.S. to immediately stop such provocative acts, otherwise it will bear the serious consequences of unforeseen incidents,” a spokesperson said in a statement from the Ministry of National Defence.

The U.S. Navy said the guided-missile destroyer was acting within its navigational rights and had not done anything wrong.

The US Navy 7th fleet issued an email statement regarding the incident.

“Unlawful and sweeping maritime claims in the South China Sea pose a serious threat to the freedom of the seas, including the freedoms of navigation and overflight, free trade and unimpeded commerce, and freedom of economic opportunity for South China Sea littoral nations.”


The US Navy confirmed that their forces are active in the South China Sea every day.

This was the second day in a row where the two countries engaged in a stand-off, which has increased tensions in the South China Sea.

China has laid claims to the vast swathes of the area which overlap with exclusive economic zones of several other nations including the Philippines. Trillions of dollars’ worth of trade enter this waterway on an annual basis.

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