For the first time under President Donald Trump US Navy warship has sailed close to the disputed South China Sea which is controlled by China, this move will exacerbate tension between US and China. US Navy warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of an island built up by China in the South China Sea, On Wednesday U.S. officials said, in the strategic waterway the first such challenge to Beijing. On the condition of anonymity, the senior official said, in the Spratly Islands, USS Dewey traveled near the Mischief Reef, among a string of reefs, islets shoals over which China has disputes with its neighbouring countries.
The freedom of navigation operation, which is sure to anger China, comes as Trump wants to look for Beijing’s cooperation to rein in ally North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs. South China sea and disputed islands are defined by UN convention as extending at most 12 nautical miles from the coastline. An US official said, last year, it was the first operation near a land which was included in a ruling against China by an international arbitration court in The Hague and the court invalidated China’s claim to sovereignty over large swathes of the South China Sea.
The US patrol the first of its kind was marked as latest attempt to counter what Washington noticed as Beijing’s efforts to limit navigation freedom in the strategic waters. US has criticized China’s island construction and build up of military facilities in the sea, and expressed concern to restrict free movement that they could use. US allies and partners in the region had grown anxious during as the new administration held off on carrying out South China Sea operations, during first few months .
Last month, Admiral Harry Harris the top US commander in the Asia Pacific region, said the United States would like to carry out freedom of navigation operations in the South China Sea soon, without offering any details. The US military still has a long lasting position that these operations are carried out throughout the world, including the areas claimed by allies and are separate from political considerations.
The Pentagon said it was continue regular freedom of navigation operations and would do more in the future without giving any details about its latest mission. Pentagon spokesperson Captain Jeff Davis said in the statement, “On daily basis we operate in the region of Asia Pacific including the South China Sea and also in accordance with the international law.” China says the United States is interfering in the disputes and is rapidly growing up the situation. However, the South China Sea is the subject of a territorial dispute between China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan, the Philippines and Brunei. But all those countries seem to have been managing their disputes with China.
Last month, The latest US patrol grows up US china tension that has eased after the trump hosted the chinese President Xi Jinping for summit at US leaders florida resort. Trump lambasted china in presidential campaign as he accused beijing of stealing US jobs with an unfair manner and unfair trade policy. But after meeting Xi Jinping Trump Praised him for efforts to restrain North Korea. Though Pyongyang persisted with basaltic missiles test. Freedom of navigation operation resembles with innocent passage and could have reinforced rather than challenged. But china claims to territorial limits around the reef.