China hits out at US provocation in South China Sea

China's Ministry of National Defense has labeled a US warship's entry into waters around China's islands and reefs in the South China Sea as a serious political and military provocation. Spokesperson Ren Guoqiang set out the ministry's position on Friday.

Ren said the USS Mustin, a guided missile destroyer, arbitrarily entered the waters before it was identified by two Chinese vessels and warned off. China's sovereignty over the islands and their surrounding waters in the South China Sea is beyond question, he said. However, the US has time and again sent warships into the area, severely damaging the sovereignty and security of China and in opposition to the basic norms of international relations, Ren continued. China resolutely opposes such actions as they harm military relations between the two countries, causing close encounters between their air forces and navies and could lead to misjudgment and even accidents, according to the spokesperson.

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(Source: CGTN,