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China fires missile in warning to US over disputed sea lane

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By Isaac Newton Tetteh – GITFIConline.com

China has fired  two missiles, including one dubbed an “aircraft-carrier killer”, into the South China Sea,  in a pointed warning to the United States as tensions in the disputed sea lane rise to new levels.

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The South China Morning Post reported on Thursday that Beijing fired one intermediate-range ballistic missile, DF-26B, from Qinghai province and another medium-range ballistic missile, DF-21D, from Zhejiang province on Wednesday in response to US aerial activities in a “no-fly zone”.

In response, Mark Esper, the US defence chief, said China has repeatedly fallen short of promises to abide by international laws, noting China seems to be flexing its muscles the most in Southeast Asia.

The two missiles were reportedly fired in the direction of the area between Hainan province and the disputed Paracel Islands, the Hong Kong-based publication added, quoting an unnamed source.

According to the newspaper, a US U-2 spy plane had reportedly entered a Chinese-designated “no-fly zone” on Tuesday without permission during a live-fire naval drill conducted by China in the Bohai Sea off its north coast.

In a social media post, Mr. Liu Xiaoming, China’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, said the US move “severely disrupted” China’s normal exercises and “training activities”.

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Mr. Zhao Lijian, China’s foreign ministry spokesman, described the spy plane overflight as “provocative actions” and urged the US to stop.

China’s military will neither “dance to the tune of the US” nor allow the United States to “cause trouble”, defence ministry spokesman Mr. Wu Qian has  said

Amid rising tensions between both militaries, he said China hopes the United States can take practical measures to create a “positive atmosphere” for high-level exchanges between their two militaries.

The DF-26B missile, which was formally launched earlier this month, is capable of hitting moving targets at sea, making it an “aircraft-carrier killer”, according to the state-owned Global Times.

Chinese defence ministry spokesperson, Senior Colonel Wu Qian, was previously quoted as saying the missile can carry conventional or nuclear warheads and is capable of launching precision strikes on land and sea targets.

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Source: Aljazera. Com

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