BEIJING – China lashed out at the U.S. on Wednesday after a pair of B-52 bombers along a Chinese-held school in the South china Sea, in the midst of an escalating words and shows the military strength of the two major Pacific powers.
Ministry of foreign affairs spokeswoman Hua Chunying warned the U.S. against “hyping up militarization and unrest,” while the promise that China would take all measures necessary for the defence of the sovereignty.
The USA do what they want to do is risky, and China will not be threatened by a military warships,” Hua told reporters at a daily briefing in Beijing.
This week’s flyby in the vicinity of Scarborough School, which China took from the Philippines in 2012, came after the US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis accused Beijing of “intimidation and coercion” in the South china Sea. China claims almost the entirety of the sea — resource-rich waters, which include some of the world’s busiest shipping lanes — despite the overlapping claims of the neighbors, including the Philippines, Vietnam and Taiwan.
Speaking at a summit of the top security officials in Singapore last weekend, Mattis said that China has deployed anti-ship missiles and surface-to-air missiles and landed nuclear-capable bombers over the disputed islands. He swore that the Indo-Pacific would remain the “priority” theater ” for the AMERICAN troops.
Last month, China announced that it had sent warships to drive two U.S. Navy ships sailing close to Chinese enterprises in the Paracel Island chain, where China has recently announced it had landed strategic bombers at an airport for the first time.
That naval confrontation came shortly after the Pentagon withdrew its invitation to China to take part in multinational naval exercises near Hawaii to protest against China’s military movements in the South china Sea.
Despite the rising tension, Mattis is expected to visit Beijing at an unannounced date. He said last weekend that he would travel soon to China’s invitation.
China’s Ministry of Defence has said that it would welcome Mattis and hoped for continued exchanges with the U.S. military.