China Asks Countries to not ‘Create Tension’ in South China Sea

January 30, 2015 10:19 AM


Chinese officials called on foreign countries to neither “create dissension” nor “create tension” in the South China Sea region, according to Friday remarks from a foreign ministry spokeswoman.

“Countries outside this region should respect efforts made by countries in the region to maintain peace and stability,” said Hua Chunying.

The remarks come a day after the commander of U.S. 7th Fleet, Vice Adm. Robert Thomas said Chinese claims in the South China Sea were creating “unnecessary friction” and suggested Japan conduct maritime patrols in the South China Sea has a stabilizing influence.

“I think that [Japan Maritime Self Defense Forces] operations in the South China Sea makes sense in the future,” he said Reuters.

“In the South China Sea, frankly, the Chinese fishing fleet, the Chinese coastguard and the (navy) overmatch their neighbors.”

In particular, China’s land reclamation efforts in the Spratly Islands, near the Philippines, for what appears to be a military landing field have raised concerns with members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) who called this week for a code of conduct in the South China Sea.

For its part, China’s response is in line with previous requests for the U.S. and other countries to stay out of the region, of which China claims vast swaths.

“We have the will and ability to jointly maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea region,” Hua said.

Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone is the editor of USNI News. He has covered legislation, acquisition and operations for the Sea Services since 2009 and spent time underway with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the Canadian Navy.
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