m3n4.net February 17, 2019

Chinese destroyer `came dangerously close to US Navy ship´

05 October 2018, 12:06 | Tara Lloyd

‘Maneuvered to prevent collision’: Chinese destroyer chases USS Decatur in South China Sea

China condemns US for South China Sea freedom of navigation operation

"The PRC destroyer approached within 45 yards of DECATUR's bow, after which DECATUR maneuvered to prevent a collision", said Brown.

The Foreign Ministry in Beijing said in a statement that it strongly urged the United States to stop such "provocative" actions, noting that the operation carried out by the U.S. warship was a "threat to its sovereignty". Tim Gorman, spokesperson for U.S. Pacific Fleet.

The Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy reportedly took on the US Navy in a showdown in the South China Sea on Sunday during a freedom-of-navigation operation involving the USS Decatur.

The Arleigh Burke-class USS Decatur (DDG 73) was built at Bath Iron Works in 1996.

Meanwhile, media reports have said China has also canceled a high-level security meeting with U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis that had been planned for later this month amid a broad range of disputes between Beijing and Washington, over issues such as arms sales to Taiwan and military activity in the South China Sea and other waters around China.

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The USS Decatur travelled within 12 nautical miles of the Gaven and Johnson Reefs on Sunday.

China's defence ministry said the Chinese vessel was conducting "normal patrols" when the two vessels "met", adding that the countries' defence departments "carried out effective communication". Five other countries - including Vietnam and the Philippines - have also staked claims in the area, one of the world's busiest shipping routes.

Monday's incident too was condemned by the Chinese.

The Luyang's maneuver against the Decatur is similar to a 2013 act of coercion against a US cruiser in the South China Sea. A statement issued by China's defence ministry said that a Chinese naval ship was then sent to give a warning to the United States vessel to leave, a report in the Al-Jazeera said.

After the incident on September 30, the Chinese government abruptly canceled a high-level security dialogue planned for mid-October in Beijing.

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On Monday, a US official confirmed that Defense Secretary Jim Mattis had canceled a planned trip to China in October after China had downgraded the level of officials he was to meet.

Those comments came after Trump accused China of meddling in the upcoming USA elections.

Washington last week enacted new tariffs against China covering another $200 billion of its imports. China's ship forced the United States ship to turn, which was the whole point of the interception, to chase the USS Decatur out of what China considers their territorial waters.

Neither side has showed signs of giving up, and there are no trade negotiations scheduled to end the commercial battle. US-Chinese relations have been strained on multiple levels since Donald Trump became president in 2017.

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