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The Trump administration continues to deploy U.S. military ships in the South China Sea.
The spokesman of the Southern Theater Command (STC) of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), Colonel Li Huamin, informed that the guided-missile destroyer USS Mustin entered China's territorial waters without permission.
Beijing urged Washington to refrain from further naval operations in the South China Sea and stated that U.S. activities in the area create conditions for an unintended armed confrontation.
The U.S. claimed that its destroyer was conducting a routine operation in the area, and it appeals to the principle of freedom of navigation as a justification of that activity.
Besides pointing out that the PLA monitored the intruder ship during its entire journey through China’s waters, Li recalled that Beijing has undisputed sovereignty over the islands in the South China Sea and adjacent waters.
WASHINGTON — The US government has imposed sanctions on dozens of Chinese companies for helping Beijing advance its territorial claims in the South China Sea -- the first punitive action of its kind over the disputed waters, and almost certain tensions between the countries. pic.twitter.com/PkpmCNr5an
— TOM S. GATES ★ DRAWSON'S CREEK ������������ (@sExecutivePower)
August 27, 2020
Vietnam, the Philippines, Brunei, and Malaysia, however, claim their rights to these territories, which could hold valuable oil and gas deposits.
China is currently building artificial islands and deploying military infrastructure in the Spratly and Paracelsus archipelagos to strengthen its presence in the contested area.
President Xi Jinping's administration has also shown its displeasure to the U.S. arms sales to Taiwan and other countries in the region, which it considers a major problem because the regional peace and stability deteriorate.