BEIJING, April 28 -- A US guided-missile destroyer USS Barry trespassed into Chinese territorial waters off the Xisha Islands without permission on April 28. In response, the Southern Theater Command (STC) of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) organized naval and air forces to track, verify, identify, and warn the ship away, Senior Colonel Li Huamin, spokesperson for the PLA STC, said in a statement on Tuesday.
Snr. Col. Li pointed out that the provocative acts of the United States seriously violated international law and China's sovereignty and security interests, increased regional security risks, and were prone to cause unexpected incidents. They were also incompatible with the current joint efforts of international community to fight against the COVID-19, and against the common will of countries in the South China Sea region to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea.
China urges the United States to focus on its own business with pandemic prevention and control, make more contributions to the global fight against the COVID-19, and immediately stop military operations that are detrimental to regional security, peace and stability, Snr. Col. Li said, reaffirming that the Chinese military will stay on high alert and take all necessary measures to protect national sovereignty and security, and safeguard peace and stability in the South China Sea.