Chinese state media is calling on military forces to fire warning shots and deliberately ram U.S. warships that sail too close to their islands in the disputed South China Sea.
A recent article posted on the social media account of People’s Daily declared that China must “teach the U.S. a lesson” should they continue intruding on China’s rightful territory, the South China Morning Post reports.
Chinese forces should fire warning shots or even deliberately collide with American warships that sail close to the Paracel Islands in the disputed South China Sea…
…Beijing must take tough action to “teach the US a lesson” if the latter continues in its bold acts…
Last month a U.S. Navy ship USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, came within 12 nautical miles of Triton Island in the disputed Paracel Islands, thus catapulting tensions in the oil-rich region to an all-time high.
The Pentagon said it was exercising the right to freedom of navigation in open seas.
The USS Curtis Wilbur was sent near the contested island in the South China Sea on to challenge “excessive maritime claims that restrict the rights and freedoms of the United States and others,” a U.S. Defense Department spokesman told CNN.
“This operation demonstrates, as President Obama and Secretary [Ash] Carter have stated, the United States will fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows. That is true in the South China Sea, as in other places around the globe,” U.S. Navy Commander and spokesman Bill Urban said.
This week U.S satellite images surfaced that appear to show two batteries of eight missile launchers and a radar system on Woody Island in the Paracels, which has ignited concerns over China’s militarization.
China has been embroiled in fierce territorial disputes in the region ever since they claimed a vast swathe of land known as the ‘nine-dash line.’
Tensions in the South China Sea have been on the rise since Beijing began a massive ‘land reclamation’ project to expand and construct facilities on small islands in the disputed areas of the region.
Here is a look at the satellite imagery of the build up on Woody Island in the disputed South China Sea, courtesy of Stratfor Global Intelligence: