July 12, 2011
China’s army chief said the timing of U.S. naval exercises in the South China Sea was “inappropriate” given the ongoing bilateral disagreements in the region between China and other Asian nations.
Disputes over the sea’s islands and surrounding waters should be resolved through “dialogue and diplomatic measures,” Chen Bingde, chief of staff of the People’s Liberation Army, was cited as saying by the official Xinhua News agency.
China asserts jurisdiction over most of the South China Sea, including oil and gas blocks more than 1,000 kilometers (625 miles) from its shores. The Philippines and Vietnam have in recent months accused China of incursions into sensitive areas. China has responded by accusing them of provocative acts.
Vietnam has announced joint naval exercises with the U.S. later this month, a few weeks after the Philippines completed similar drills with U.S. warships. The activities sent “mixed signals” to China, Xinhua cited Chen as saying.
This article was posted: Tuesday, July 12, 2011 at 3:06 am