DFA, US 'taking seriously' China's deployment of missiles in West PH Sea

05 May, 2018, 01:42 | Author: Roderick Gutierrez
  • The US Defense Department which opposes China's installation of military facilities on outposts it has built up in the South China Sea declined comment

Washington:The US has warned China that there will be consequences for its growing militarisation in the South China Sea, the media reported.

The US Defense Department, which opposes China's installation of military facilities on outposts it has built up in the South China Sea, declined comment.

"We are well aware of China's militarisation of the South China Sea".

Dr Euan Graham, the Director of International Security at the Lowy Institute in Sydney, says the latest manoeuvres in the Spratly Islands will force the United States and allies, including Australia, to reconsider before sending ships into the South China Sea. "There will be near-term and long-term consequences, and we'll certainly keep you up to date", she was quoted as saying by CNN.

According to sources close to the U.S. intelligence, the recent missiles were installed by the Chinese military in the last 30 days in the disputed South China Sea.

The West Philippine Sea is the Philippines' exclusive economic zone in the South China Sea.

The Chinese claims in the South China Sea, as well as the East China Sea, are countered by Vietnam, Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, Taiwan, and Japan.

China previously deployed short-range missiles and point-defense systems like anti-aircraft guns and close-in-weapons-systems to the islands, created to defeat incoming missiles.

He also named developments in Djibouti - where China opened its first overseas military base previous year - and at the ports of Hambantota in Sri Lanka and Gwadar in Pakistan, as well as the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, as "predatory economic activities".

The missile installations represent the first such deployments on the locations, which include Fiery Cross Reef, Subi Reef and Mischief Reef in the Spratly Islands, according to U.S. intelligence assessments.

The three features where China allegedly installed missile systems are also being claimed by the Philippines.

Further, Pentagon chief spokeswoman Dana White reaffirmed the United States' commitment to the worldwide waters.

The YJ-12B has the capability to strike ships within a 295 nautical-mile radius, while the HQ-9B has the potential to target aircraft within 160 nautical miles.

He likewise affirmed that the military-to-military ties of the two nations remain strong, and they are committed to its Mutual Defense Treaty with Manila.

The US regularly carries out Freedom of Navigation operations (FONOPs) in the South China Sea to reinforce its right to sail unimpeded through the area.

Virtually confirming the deployment of the missiles, Hua said, "relevant deployment is not directed against any country". China lays claim to a number of disputed islands and territories, which often results in touchy situations during routine drills.

"President Duterte must not forsake the sovereignty of our country to compensate for infrastructure contracts that he has scored with China", Castro said.

The reefs are located across the disputed Spratly archipelago between the Philippines and Vietnam.

China "hopes relevant parties can objectively and calmly view this", she added.



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