China protests Newest US Navy Assignment in South China Sea

BEIJING — China said that it discharged ships and airplanes to monitor the U.S. guided-missile destroyer John S. McCain since it passed close to Chinese-held islands in the South China Sea.

The People’s Liberation Army detained the U.S. warship for trespassing to Chinese territorial waters on Friday near the Paracel Islands — known as Xisha from China — through the most recent liberty of navigation assignments from the U.S. Navy aimed toward withstanding China’s massive asserts from the strategic waterway.

A spokesperson for the PLA’s Southern Theater Control Col. Zhang Nandong stated Beijing required the U.S. to finish such activities, calling them”blatant navigation hegemony and military provocation” which”severely violated China’s sovereignty and security interests, and critically jeopardized peace and stability in the South China Sea.”

“We urge the US side to immediately discontinue this type of provocative activities, strictly control and manage its own maritime and air military operations to not trigger any eventuality”, Zhang was quoted as saying by the official Xinhua News Agency.

Frictions between China and Indonesia also have improved over actions by China’s fishing boats, the coast guard, and navy within Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone.

China dismissed a 2016 mediation ruling that invalidated almost all of its territorial claims in the South China Sea, however, has struck persistent pushback in the U.S.its allies and China’s Southeast Asian allies over its moves to cement its control from the contested region.