Xinhua commentary: US should stop provocations in South China Sea

A U.S. military aircraft carried out reconnaissance close to China’s island of Hainan Tuesday, in the country’s most recent provocation against China’s legitimate rights and interests.

In total disregard of China’s call not to disturb peace in the South China Sea, Washington recently has been busy flexing its military muscle at China’s doormat.

Last week, the U.S. warship, USS William P. Lawrence, intruded into Chinese waters near the Nansha Islands without the permission of the Chinese government.

Such acts, carried out in the name of either “routine patrols” or “freedom of navigation,” are nothing but blatant provocations against China’s maritime security interests.

Such dangerous and irresponsible activities also significantly increase the risk of military misjudgment in the region.

Photo taken on April 5, 2016 shows the lighthouse on Zhubi Reef of Nansha Islands in theSouth China Sea, south China. (Xinhua file photo)

Photo taken on April 5, 2016 shows the lighthouse on Zhubi Reef of Nansha Islands in theSouth China Sea, south China. (Xinhua file photo)

The Pentagon said that two Chinese fighter jets carried out an intercept of the U.S. aircraft Tuesday in an “unsafe” manner.

While accusing Chinese aircraft of carrying out an “unsafe” intercept, Washington seems to forget that its frequent close reconnaissance jeopardizing China’s sea and air safety are a true source of worry as they could result in accidents and put China and U.S. military security at risk.

China’s countermeasures are reasonable, necessary and wholly legitimate as the U.S. acts have already posed serious threats to China’s sovereignty and security interests.

And compared with those countries which sent their military planes to others’ doorsteps, China cherishes more the safety of its personnel and equipment.

There is every reason to demand that the United States end its “close-in” aerial and naval surveillance of China and stop muddying the waters in the region so as to fish for political gains.

China, which holds no “excessive claim” of sovereignty in South China Sea, believes in communication and dialogue. Neither muscle-flexing nor arbitrary intervention will shake its resolve to safeguard its sovereignty and maritime rights.

Besides stopping its provocative acts, Washington should also honor its commitment of not taking sides on the South China Sea issue, if peace and stability is what it really wants to see and achieve in the region. Read more



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