Home » South China Sea tensions explode as US sends destroyer through Strait – Beijing backlash
South China Sea tensions explode as US sends destroyer through Strait – Beijing backlash
May 20, 2021
South China Sea: Expert discusses tensions
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This prompted further fears of all-out conflict in the disputed region. The US Navy released a statement explaining why the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, USS Curtis Wilbur, was complying with international law.
The statement read: “The ship’s transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the US commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.
“The United States military will continue to fly, sail, and operate anywhere international law allows.”
But China denounced the US Navy for “disrupting” peace in the contested waters.
A spokesman for China’s Eastern Theatre Command said: “The US actions sends the wrong signals to Taiwan independence forces, deliberately disrupting the regional situation and endangering peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.”
The remarks come after a former Australian Major General warned of a “very big war” between the US and China in the event that China decides to take back Taiwan by force.
China’s stance toward its neighbour has become increasingly aggressive and its rhetoric is ever more belligerent.
In April, China’s Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng insisted that Beijing “will never allow Taiwan to be independent.”
Retired Major General and Liberal Senator Jim Dolan pointed out that Washington is “not convinced” that it could win any such military clash and that Australia could face “collateral attacks” from Beijing.
He told Sky News Australia that any attempt by Beijing to take back Taiwan by force would inevitably result in a major military conflict.
He explained: “China has an aim and that is to take back Taiwan peacefully or by force and we have got to accept that.
“But that is not going to be a tiny little Taiwan force. In order to do it they have to take down Guam – if you listen to the Indo-Pacific US commander 300,000 men.
“They have to take down Guam and they have to negate US bases in Japan.
“To me that sounds like a very big war.”
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