USS Lassen (DDG 82) (R) transits in formation with ROKS Sokcho (PCC 778) during exercise Foal Eagle 2015, in waters east of the Korean Peninsula, in this March 12, 2015 file handout photo provided by the U.S. Navy. REUTERS/U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Martin Wright/Handout via Reuters
USS Lassen (DDG 82) (R) transits in formation with ROKS Sokcho (PCC 778) during exercise Foal Eagle 2015, in waters east of the Korean Peninsula. (U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Martin Wright/Handout via Reuters)

China’s naval commander told his U.S. counterpart that a minor incident could spark war in the South China Sea if the United States did not stop its “provocative acts” in the disputed waterway, the Chinese navy said on Friday.

Admiral Wu Shengli made the comments to U.S. chief of naval operations Admiral John Richardson during a video teleconference on Thursday, according to a Chinese naval statement.

The two officers held talks after a U.S. warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of one of Beijing’s man-made islands in the contested Spratly archipelago on Tuesday.

China has rebuked Washington over the patrol, the most significant U.S. challenge yet to territorial limits China effectively claims around its seven artificial islands in one of the world’s busiest sea lanes.

“If the United States continues with these kinds of dangerous, provocative acts, there could well be a seriously pressing situation between frontline forces from both sides on the sea and in the air, or even a minor incident that sparks war,” the statement paraphrased Wu as saying.

“(I) hope the U.S. side cherishes the good situation between the Chinese and U.S. navies that has not come easily and avoids these kinds of incidents from happening again,” Wu said.

Speaking earlier, a U.S. official said the naval chiefs agreed to maintain dialogue and follow protocols to avoid clashes.

Scheduled port visits by U.S. and Chinese ships and planned visits to China by senior U.S. Navy officers remained on track, the official said.

“None of that is in jeopardy. Nothing has been canceled,” said the official.

UNPLANNED ENCOUNTERS

Both officers agreed on the need to stick to protocols established under the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES).

“They agreed that it’s very important that both sides continue to use the protocols under the CUES agreement when they’re operating close to keep the chances for misunderstanding and any kind of provocation from occurring,” the U.S. official said.

Indeed, Wu said he believed the Chinese and U.S. navies had plenty of scope for cooperation and should both “play a positive role in maintaining peace and stability in the South China Sea”.

A U.S. Navy spokesman stressed Washington’s position that U.S. freedom of navigation operations were meant to “protect the rights, freedoms, and lawful uses of the sea and airspace guaranteed to all nations under international law”.

Chinese warships followed the USS Lassen, a guided-missile destroyer, as it moved through the Spratlys on Tuesday. The U.S. Navy is operating in a maritime domain bristling with Chinese ships.

While the U.S. Navy is expected to keep its technological edge in Asia for decades, China’s potential trump card is sheer weight of numbers, with dozens of naval and coastguard vessels routinely deployed in the South China Sea, security experts say.

China has overlapping claims with Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei in the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.

Next week, Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit Vietnam and Singapore, while Chinese Defence Minister Chang Wanquan will attend a meeting of Southeast Asian defense ministers in Malaysia that U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter is also due to attend.

COURT SETBACK

Separately, China suffered a legal setback on Thursday when an arbitration court in the Netherlands ruled it had jurisdiction to hear some territorial claims the Philippines has filed against Beijing over the South China Sea.

The court said additional hearings would be held to decide the merits of the Philippines’ arguments. China has not participated in the proceedings and does not recognize the court’s authority in the case.

Manila filed the case in 2013 to seek a ruling on its right to exploit the South China Sea waters in its 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ) as allowed under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

China, facing international legal scrutiny for the first time over its assertiveness in the South China Sea, would neither participate in nor accept the case at the arbitration court, Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said on Friday.

Liu told reporters the case would not affect China’s sovereign claims in the seas.

The Philippine government welcomed the court decision.

Solicitor General Florin Hilbay, Manila chief’s lawyer in the case, said the ruling represented a “significant step forward in the Philippines’ quest for a peaceful, impartial resolution of the disputes between the parties and the clarification of their rights under UNCLOS”.

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Copyright  © 2015 Capitol Hill Blue

Copyright  © 2015 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved

36 COMMENTS

  1. Ploughing the field to produce war-weaoon sales by the big brother. Creating a situaiton in the domian as such that Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Philiphines, Vietnam, Indonesia will run to the Big brother home to buy huge weapons , ultimately, a total trillion dollar weapon sales will be ralized.
    Hip Hip Hurray the big brother’s militry industry.

  2. tough empty threat from someone (china) who is too chicken to take on a country its own size, including Japan and the US. China is a coward that can only bully its smaller, weaker neighbors.

  3. If China and Japan were to combine together and form a more powerful China, then China would have a much easier time taking over any variety of smaller countries. Of course, this may certainly need at least 10 more years, especially to combine military at the same time as technology advancement. Eventually, this more powerful China will become an overwhelming threat to America. This is exactly what happens in my screenplay titled; “The Last President” by Douglas Paige at; driveme89123yahoocom and asking only $2.5 million.

  4. The US should point all nuclear weapons at Russia and China making sure if they want war there will no more of either country left on this planet.

  5. if war erupted in that part of the world it should be fought by Asian nations however right now U.S. will be responsible for starting it by gate crashing their party, U.S. plays the instigator. China probably went out of line occupying the disputed islands, let them solve it.

  6. I believe it’s time to run our entire Pacific fleet thru the straits and just sit for a while and see if the Chinese have got the balls to back their threats. We could also run in some Japanese and Philippine navy’s around the disputed area. It is either stand our ground( ocean) and see who is really in charge of the seas.

  7. Something tells me China and Russia are trying to find an excuse to start an armed conflict with the U.S. It seems that the commies have waited until they became strong enough to raise their heads. Never have I seen so many bold acts being carried out as at present.

  8. Why are we taking shit from a little barking dog like China. Send in more ships. If China wants to make the mistake and fire on a U.S. Warship then it will suffer the ultimate consequence of waking the sleeping giant. They won’t do anything about it. They can’t do anything about it. Too many people concentrated in small areas. They would see their population trimmed down into the low millions. Obamallama, grow a pair and send in more. Don’t take it in the $##*$ and back down now. Let’s get this party started….. Screw China!!

  9. China is a rogue country out to land-grab as much as it is allowed — the world should never allow this. China is the neo-Nazi of this century!

  10. china is pushing really hard to see what the u. s. has to play with n war. china has more ships n play at this time but there power is less. they r willing to give up a few lives just to see what our big guns can & will do 2 their s p f. play on my children play on

  11. It’s confront them now or later, but if we let them continue to build these bases on top of reefs with air strips and bunkers it will only be a harder fight later.

  12. “China, facing international legal scrutiny for the first time over its assertiveness in the South China Sea, would neither participate in nor accept the case at the arbitration court,”

    China wants everything there way and they won’t hear anything else..but force.

  13. China is illegally taking international water to be its own. There should be law against this kind of BAD behavior. If any country violated the law, it should be penalize and put it away (STOP it FAST) The world needs to stop this illegal act once and for all before before this “THUG” starts to invade the world.

  14. Lets see, China takes Coral Reefs that are hundreds of miles out in an ocean and that are claimed by other closer nations, then builds new land on other nations land. Now, who is committing acts of war?

    • China has destroyed the Coral Reefs in the South Sea, that triggers the unbalanced of the eco system in the areas. Make no mistakes, China has always a nation with a bad reputation of being a good neighbor. Changing the status quo by building the man made islands that are still in disputes with other countries is a coward act. US must stop China to maintain peace in the areas. If not, China will try to take the whole world over, and we all become prisoners so the government of China can sell more organs… That’s so sick when mention or talk about CHINA ….

  15. Soft WW3 started with cyber war and currency war. China’s Iron Tiger spies stole USA military/private company secrets already. Petrodollar, currency war, oil war, BRICS(brazil,russia,china,s africa),AIIB,ukraine,ISIS,Yemen. Around 400,000 chinese 50 cent cyber army. USA will destroying Russia/China economy.
    With money, fake oppressive communist got aggressive with 1000 year china dream to takeover the world. According to official Chinese media, China have “6 wars in 50 year” plan: Taiwan,Spratly Islands,Southern Tibet, Senkaku/Okinawa,Outer Mongolia,Russia
    Soft WW3 started. Cyber war、petrodollar, currency war, oil war, BRICS(brazil,russia,china,s africa),AIIB,ukraine,ISIS,Yemen
    Chinese Great cannon, Assassin’s Mace
    Cyber war where china stole USA military/private company secrets in a cyber war already.
    China selling mind destroying illegal synthetic drug to americans(and world).
    There are 500,000 chinese cyber spy/censor 50 cent army.
    S Korean VANK(financed by S korea, china, and some ethnic koreans).
    5000 N korea cyber force and attack on sony and facebook account
    Attack on russia economy with low oil price.
    Russians invades parts of Ukraine
    China/S Korea started newly intensified campaign of Japan bashing after Aoyama disclosed there are huge potential for gas/oil around water off japan.
    Chinese aggression in senkaku and south china sea.
    Chinese raid in south japan islands coral(probably installed sonar or damaged japanese sonar, or something sinister).
    China is building ports all around world as well as have presence. In japan, china is probably funding okinawan independence movement as well as usa base movements and local newspaper.
    USA spies on everyone, especially internet
    USA assassinate using drones
    Google my blog “real7777 china communist” for details, pictures,wiki, youtube link etc. If there’s any error let me know so I can fix them.
    Today, there are around 200,000 abduction per year in china plus 2nd child non-citizens and 3 million labor/sex/bride slaves in china and communities are ok with old chinese tradition. Organ transplants from Falun Gong prisoners. True to chinese tradition of befriend and back stab, once Xi got some power Xi dumped ugly wife. He then married pretty PR/singer who sang for soldiers that killed student at Tiananmin massacre. Some estimate like 180,000 riot, mainly from communist stealing farms and giving them farm land price and selling at city/business price.
    Mao was child molester who had many under aged virgin girls.
    Qing were manchu and after communist genocide manchu area became han majority similar to Tibet and Uighur are getting replaced by han. Mao had to kill few tens of million EDUCATED manchu who were used to good life provided by Japan.
    Google “real7777 nemoto guningtou” to find out how japanese saved ROC/Taiwan from fake oppressive communist.
    Obama is a hero who was scapegoat but were able to save the world from great depression. 2013 baton was passed to Abe. World need strong dollar so that conned-sumer spending will increase and economies will not be so weak. Japan succeeded and manipulating dollar higher. Ise shrine is in 20 year prosper cycle since 2013 and stocks are up huge. It is either 1000 years of manipulation or self fulfilling prophecy. Exporters had huge profit and wage are up slightly exporters are going to help suppliers. Soon it will be big wage inflation since employment is tight.
    google “real7777 Globalization”

  16. China got the nerve when China is the one put those illegal man made islets in some body else backyard! The lies China been spreading to its brainwashed, chock hold in the neck citizens is the one going to start the WW 3 type scenario in the near future.

  17. If China starts a war over there then it’s their loss as they fell for the trap. This is what the US wants. A war with China. So China if you are smart, go to court, if you want to stay as a dumazz then yeah go to war with the US. By the way, China you have Fk all friends, you have NK, Russia. That’;s it! Oh my mistake, we’ll try Cuba as well.
    Look China,get out of the Countries EEZ, anything out of that then yeah ok claim. But inside someone’s EEZ? Forget it. You will not win this case.
    China PLEASE think! Heard of STING the Singer? He sang about War with the Russians and now this song is about you so if you love your Children too then play safe and go to court!

  18. So much for the totally worthless enforcement power of the United Nations. All they can really do is view these incidents with “alarm”.

    • Keith you remind me Obama. Is that you? Cause you sound spineless and brainless, so I hope it’s not you. If you are Obama then will you please grow some Fkn balls will you?? Gash!

  19. China is not sovereign in or above the waters which were created for all people. For a nation to believe that they can amass the waters by trying devise ways to reformulate a rock is in the way of delusional thinking. China should maintain the air of their mainland, make certain that the silos are filled with grain, for there is One ready to thresh the floors which they deny, Elohim.

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