Chinese observation ship tails U.S. vessel towards tripartite exercise in western Pacific

uni1466047135{BNN/WASHINGTON, U.S. – U.S.} – Aircraft carrier John C. Stennis was reportedly followed by a Chinese observation ship on June 15 in the Western Pacific on its way to join India and Japan for naval drills.

According to reports, the eight-day tripartite exercise “Malabar” is being held close to the South China Sea, a territory that China has disputably claimed, amidst worries that Beijing may extend its influence to the Western Pacific as well.

Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroshige Seko reportedly said that the vessel was “in Japanese waters west of Kuchinoerabu island in southern Japan before dawn” and left nearly 90 minutes after being issued a warning to exit.

Further, an officer from the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force reportedly said that John C. Stennis was to sail apart from the other vessels to draw away the Chinese ship.

This was China’s second entry into Japanese maritime territory since World War II.

Reports added that, last week, a separate Chinese naval frigate had passed near a set of uninhabited islands claimed by both countries, leading Japan to pledge to protect its maritime territory.

China reportedly responded that it was acting within its rights in accordance with international law and freedom of navigation. READ MORE OF THIS STORY

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About Cholo Brooks 13523 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.