Military Capabilities

China slams latest FONOP by US Navy near Mischief Reef

13 August 2017

A Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson has slammed the latest 'freedom of navigation operation' (FONOP) conducted by the US Navy (USN), claiming that the move infringed upon Beijing's sovereignty and endangered lives.

The remarks came on 11 August, after the USN's Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS John McCain (56) sailed within 12 n miles of Mischief Reef in the South China Sea the preceding day. The feature is the centre of overlapping territorial claims by China, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam.

"China is strongly dissatisfied with this," said foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang, adding that Beijing would file an official protest with Washington over the matter.

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