China vows to raise defence capabilities after US warship approaches Nansha Islands

The Chinese Foreign and Defence ministries strongly condemned an American destroyer's entry into waters around the Nansha Islands in the South China Sea on Thursday.

FM spokesman Geng Shuang stated that the Chinese military has a issued warning and expelled the USS John S. McCain, which entered Chinese waters without legitimate authorisation.

Geng said the US action happened at a time when tensions in the South China Sea were beginning to ease, and was a clear statement that the US intends to disturb stability in the region. 

Southeast Asian countries were seen to be making progress in the South China Sea dispute when foreign ministers from China and ten ASEAN countries endorsed the Conduct Code Framework in the South China Sea on August 6.

Wu Qian, spokesman for the Chinese Defence Ministry also conveyed its dissatisfaction on the issue, saying that this US provocation leaves the Chinese military no option but to strengthen its armed forces in order to protect the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The Nansha Islands, more commonly known as the Spratly Islands, is a disputed area in which Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam have all claimed partial sovereignty or economic rights at some point. The US and Japan have also sent warships to the region from time to time. 



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