Home » Budget Industry » China Claims U.S. Is Encouraging ‘Dangerous and Provocative Actions’ in Oilrig Standoff

China Claims U.S. Is Encouraging ‘Dangerous and Provocative Actions’ in Oilrig Standoff

File photo of the Haiyang Shiyou 981 oilrig. Xinhua Photo

File photo of the Haiyang Shiyou 981 oilrig. Xinhua Photo

Chinese officials are claiming the U.S. is stoking international discord over a disputed drilling operation in an area of the South China Sea in territory claimed by both China and Vietnam, according to a Tuesday statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

“There is indeed a country taking provocative actions in the South China Sea, but this country is not China,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Tuesday at a daily press briefing reported by state news service Xinhua.
“The U.S. mistaken comments have encouraged dangerous and provocative actions.”

The comments came after a Monday call between U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told his Chinese counterpart drilling operations of the Haiyang Shiyou 981 oilrig, “and numerous government vessels in waters disputed with Vietnam was provocative,” US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Monday, according to a report by the Reuters news service.
“We are particularly concerned – all nations that are engaged in navigation and traffic within the South China Sea, the East China Sea, are deeply concerned about this aggressive act,” Kerry said during the meeting, according to the report.

View Paracel Islands in a larger map

The war of words between the State Department and the Chinese Foreign Ministry is the latest in the tense standoff between Vietnam and China concerning overlapping claims to territorial and mineral rights in the South China Sea.

On May 1, the state-owned China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) owned Haiyang Shiyou 981 rig set up shop to the southeast of the Paracel Islands — which both Vietnam and China claim as their exclusive economic territory.

China brought along about 80 ships to protect the rig belonging to the plethora of quasi-military maritime organizations and seven ships from the People’s Liberation Army Navy, according to a Monday report from Carl Thayer in The Diplomat.
The placement of the rig is puzzling to some experts.

“This was an unexpected move because China-Vietnam relations have been on an upward trajectory since the visit to Hanoi by Premier Li Keqiang in October,” wrote Thayer.
“At that time, both sides indicated they had reached agreement to carry forward discussions on maritime issues. China’s move was also unexpected because Vietnam has not undertaken any discernible provocative action that would justify China’s unprecedented actions.”

Vietnamese and Chinese ships have clashed over the oilrig since May 3, resulting in ship ramming and using water cannons. Ships clashed as recently as Monday, according to Vietnamese officials.

  • danielchin

    so, who’s the “trouble maker” really depends on who’s trouble it is…

  • Brian Pederson

    The moral of this story is “mind your own business”.

  • Ruckweiler

    Incredible. The Red Chinese are muscling their way around the region and the US is “provocative”? These guys WANT a brawl and just like Hitler, Stalin, and Mao they are going to push until they get one. The lessons of the bloody 20th century are lost on these guys. I’m sure the Vietnamese, Japanese, and other regional players would beg to differ.

  • Michael Flower

    – The U.S.A. Boggy-Man, OHHHHH!

    Lets face the PLA will find more reasons to fine fear and provocation with us, then it has symbols in their alphabet. They can’t decide on what kind of Regional Superpower they want to be. Russia’s military is more of a nuisance then a real military threat to the Chinese. So they need to make us the U.S. the 900-pound gorilla in the room. We need to expand our influence in the region, by helping Vietnam bolster and upgrade their military. The Chinese what to sow fear in the region and become everybody’s regional superpower friend to be. China doesn’t need to make us look like the global enemy, they already think we are the enemy.

  • Secundius

    > Chinese BS!

    The Chinese have their of Global Agenda, and they want us to believe that their agenda is actually our agenda.

  • wolverine

    China is a provocative one when they claimed the U-shaped swathe of the South China Sea that covers over 90% of the South China sea, that belongs to other South-East Asian nations’ territory, when they put the oil rig in Vietnam’s water, when they rob from the Vietnam and the Philippines their islands, when they claimed their full air rights over the disputed islands. And yet they never admit any wrongdoing, they only know how to point fingers at others when they are criticized for their aggressive and provocative actions. They just want the world to be silent and let them do whatever illegal things they want.

  • Secundius

    The Chinese see an opportunity for an old fashion land grab. So instead of trying it with the Japanese or South Koreans, because they no either country can hold their own in a fight. So, they go after the weakest countries in the region. Vietnam has a large Army, virtually no Navy too speak of. And the Philippines, between in fighting of
    rebel forces and a Navy that dates back to the 1950’s. And small, modern Army is no match for the PLA. As I say an easy win. Historically and technically the US should step in with the Philippines, because of it being a former US Colony and because of its
    strategic location and importance to the regional as a whole. And the Chinese want to see how far they can push us, the US that is. They might actually go after Taiwan too, but I don’t see them being that Stupid.