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China, U.S. tensions increase over disputed islands

The U.S. Navy conducted routine operations in the South China Sea. Associated Press/Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Gregory Johnson/U.S. Navy

China, U.S. tensions increase over disputed islands

Chinese officials on Friday threatened “serious consequences” over recent United States naval maneuvers around the disputed Paracel Islands. The U.S. Navy on Friday sailed a destroyer around the islands in the South China Sea for the second day in a row, a move China officials said threatened China’s sovereignty and security. Beijing said the Chinese military forced the American ship away from the islands yesterday, but the United States denied the claim and has maintained that the operations are in line with international law.

What factors have contributed to growing tensions in the area? The United States has recently strengthened alliances in the Asia-Pacific region in an attempt to counter increased Chinese assertiveness. China, meanwhile, has sought to expand territorial claims in the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait. Beijing has occupied the Paracel Islands since 1974, but Vietnam and Taiwan also claim them as their territory. 

Dig deeper: Listen to Cal Thomas’ report on The World and Everything in It podcast about the dangers of China’s aggressive agenda.

Lauren Canterberry

Lauren Canterberry is a reporter for WORLD. She graduated from the World Journalism Institute and the University of Georgia with a degree in journalism, both in 2017. She worked as a local reporter in Texas and now lives in Georgia with her husband.

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