China defends drills in East China Sea

08:15, April 23, 2010      

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China said Thursday that its naval ships in the East China Sea did not violate international law, after Japanese media alleged that two Chinese submarines and eight destroyers were spotted circling Japan's Okinotori coral reefs.

Huang Xueping, a spokesman with the Chinese Ministry of National Defense, warned countries concerned to not track down or disrupt the activities of Chinese military vessels engaged in normal defense exercises.

"We will investigate whether China has any intention against our nation" by dispatching the vessels, Japanese Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa said last week.

A military source told the Global Times Thursday that Chinese vessels had not reached Okinotori coral reefs.
Huang said the Chinese navy's drills on the high seas are common practice, and will not pose a threat to other countries.

Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada said Wednesday the Chinese vessel had not violated international law. Ministry officials also said the incident would have limited impact on bilateral relations.

Source: Global Times


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