Tensions between the United States Navy and the Chinese are intensifying after the U.S. Navy started conducting drills in the South China Sea.
According to Newsmax, China’s “stern representation” came on Wednesday after the Chinese government accused the USS Dewey of challenging Chinese authority in the region after they sailed within 12 nautical miles of an artificial island in the South China Sea.
China has been increasing its presence in the South China Sea in order to assert its dominance of the region.
Conservative Tribune reports:
While the Dewey did sail close to the islands, China’s claim to the territory is not recognized internationally.
According to Reuters, the territory is near Mischief Reef in the Spratly Islands. China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan all cite claims to that territory, and so it does not belong to any one country, a fact which the U.S. continues to emphasize.
As The New York Times reported, the Dewey’s action “was the first freedom of navigation operation since President Trump took office.”
A U.S. military official told Reuters that the Dewey was sent to the Mischief Reef in order to demonstrate that China doesn’t own the territory.
“USS Dewey engaged in normal operations by conducting a maneuvering drill inside 12 nautical miles of Mischief Reef,” the official said.
“The ship’s actions demonstrated that Mischief Reef is not entitled to its own territorial sea regardless of whether an artificial island has been built on top of it,” the official continued.
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