|China angers US after landing warplanes, including H-6K bomber, on South China Sea reef|
Pentagon condemns military activity as ‘raising tensions and destabilising the region’
PUBLISHED : Saturday, 19 May, 2018, 6:59am
UPDATED : Saturday, 19 May, 2018, 11:30pm
A Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force strategic bomber landed for the first time on an island reef in the South China Sea, something the US Department of Defence said “serves to raise tensions and destabilise the region”.
SCMP TODAY: INTL EDITION
A spokesman for the Pentagon, Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Logan, called the exercise an act of “China’s continued militarisation of disputed features in the South China Sea”. The Chinese air force said in a statement on its website that several bombers, including the H-6K, its most advanced, had conducted take-off and landing training on an island reef, though it did not specify which one. Hong Kong-based military observer Song Zhongping said the aircraft landed on Woody Island – or Yongxing in Mandarin – the largest of the Paracel group and southernmost of the islands claimed by Beijing in the disputed waterway … for more, go to http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/2146870/chinas-air-force-says-its-h-6k-strategic-bomber-took
Who’s the ‘devil’ in the South China Sea military disputes?
KUALA LUMPUR (June 2018): The rest of the world knows very well the war-waging US military record in the 20th Century.
It has been bombing and occupying sovereign states to serve and fulfil it imperialism agenda and to sustain its arms sales.
So, the US should be the last country to be trusted when it concerns world peace and militarism.
In the South China Sea (SCS), the Americans are angered by China’s military presence and disputes the Chinese claims in the waterway.
Then, what concern is it of the US to make its presence in a waterway that is thousands of nautical miles from the American shores?
Has China ever attacked, invaded and occupied any sovereign state in the 20th Century compared with the US?
What will be the US’ response if China were to send its warship to the US waterway?
So, China does not have the right to defend its coasts and its islands in the SCS?
And China was absolutely right to accuse the US of being the real “source of militarisation” in the SCS.
Here’s a report from the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore:
"China is putting troops, weapons on South China Sea islands, and has every right to do so, PLA official says
Head of Chinese delegation at Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore accuses US of being the real ‘source of militarisation’ in disputed waterway
PUBLISHED : Saturday, 02 June, 2018, 7:36pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 03 June, 2018, 5:24am
“Deploying troops and weapons on islands in the South China Sea is within China’s sovereign right to do and allowed by international law,” said He Lei, a lieutenant general with the People’s Liberation Army.
“All irresponsible remarks [on the subject] are an infringement of China’s domestic affairs,” he told a press conference just two hours after Mattis said in his speech at the event that Beijing had been “intimidating and coercing” its neighbours with its military activities in the disputed waterway.
He also likened the construction of military outposts in the South China Sea to the decision by late paramount leader Deng Xiaoping to send a PLA garrison to Hong Kong after the 1997 handover, in a show of the country’s sovereignty in the region.
He’s comments were the first at such a public and international event to acknowledge Beijing’s plans to base both troops and weapons on its natural and man-made islands in the Paracel and Spratly archipelagoes.
China had previously insisted that its developments on a string of islets, reefs and shoals – the territorial rights to which are still fiercely contested by several countries and regions – would only ever be used for defence purposes.
Despite He’s admission, he batted back Mattis’ accusations, saying that the “close-up reconnaissance” carried out by two US warships – which sailed within 12 nautical miles of the Paracel Islands last week – was the real “source of militarisation” in the region.
In a meeting with former President Barack Obama during a visit to the US in 2015, China’s President Xi Jinping denied the country had plans to establish military strongholds in the South China Sea.
Satellite pictures released last month, however, showed Beijing has built at least four airstrips suitable for military aircraft, on Woody Island in the Paracels, and on Fiery Cross, Mischief and Subi reefs in the Spratly archipelago.
They also showed a Chinese H-6K strategic bomber taking part in take-off and landing drills on Woody, and the presence of YJ-12B anti-ship cruise missiles and HQ-9B long-range surface-to-air missiles on Fiery Cross, Mischief and Subi.
A July 2016 file photo shows a Chinese H-6K bomber patrolling islands and reefs, including Huangyan Island in the South China Sea. China tests bombers on South China Sea island - for visual text, go to https://edition.cnn.com/2018/05/20/asia/south-china-sea-bombers-islands-intl/index.html
Andrei Chang, editor-in-chief of the Canada-based military magazine Kanwa Asian Defence, said Beijing had realised that it was impossible for it to continue to “cover up” the true nature of its plans for the South China Sea reefs.
“The satellite pictures show Beijing has stepped up its progress on militarising those island outposts, which will become the PLA’s naval and air force bases in the future,” he said on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue.
“The facilities and buildings flanked by radar equipment on the tiny islands … are not for civilian use, but are large-scale military complexes,” he said.
Meanwhile, He, who is also vice-president of the PLA Academy of Military Science, criticised Mattis’ remarks regarding Washington’s relations with Taipei.
The Pentagon chief said the US was “steadfastly committed to working with Taiwan to provide defence articles” consistent with the “obligations set out in our Taiwan Relations Act”.
He responded by saying: “The Chinese government and its people strongly oppose arms sale to Taiwan, all kinds of official government contacts to strengthen their ties with Taipei, as well as other acts to harm the ‘one-China principle’.
“The People’s Liberation Army has the determination, confidence and capability to safeguard the motherland’s safety, territorial sovereignty, integrity and its developing interests,” he said.
Zhao Xiaozhuo, a senior researcher at the Academy of Military Science, said that He’s comments suggested the PLA might be moving closer to considering military action to “reclaim” Taiwan if Washington insisted on supporting the island’s ruling, and independence-leaning, Democratic Progressive Party.
The DPP does not recognise the “1992 consensus”– an understanding that there is only one China, but that Beijing and Taipei can have their own interpretations of exactly what that means.
Andrew Yang, a former Taiwanese defence minister who is also at the security conference in Singapore, said he expected the US to tread carefully on the Taiwan issue so as not to provoke the mainland into taking military action against the self-ruled island.
“The United States will not be reckless and do things that would make the mainland think it is interfering in its internal affairs,” he said.
“US support for Taiwan has always been strong [but] we will also have to see how the [US President Donald Trump] administration reacts … [The Taiwan Act] will not take effect immediately and the US will consider its own interests.”
Additional reporting by Catherine Wong"
|US will ‘compete vigorously’ in South China Sea, Defence Secretary Jim Mattis warns Beijing|
China’s actions in region raise questions about its intentions, Pentagon chief says
PUBLISHED : Saturday, 02 June, 2018, 9:04am
UPDATED : Saturday, 02 June, 2018, 11:31pm
The United States will “compete vigorously” with China’s actions in the South China Sea if needed, US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said on Saturday, but insisted Washington was still willing to work with Beijing on a “results-oriented” relationship. “China’s policy in the South China Sea stands in stark contrast to the openness our strategy promises, it calls into question China’s broader goals,” Mattis said at the International Institute for Strategic Studies Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore. “The US will continue to pursue a constructive, results-oriented relationship with China, cooperating when possible and competing vigorously where we must … of course we recognise any sustainable Indo-Pacific order has a role for China. “Make no mistake: America is in the Indo-Pacific to stay. This is our priority theatre,” he said … for more, go to http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/2148866/us-compete-vigorously-south-china-sea-defence-secretary