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China tells U.S. to halt spy plane flights

26 Comments

China has demanded that the United States stop spy plane flights near the Chinese coast, saying they have "severely harmed" trust, but the Pentagon insisted Wednesday it was within its rights.

The dispute comes after Taiwanese media reported two Chinese fighter jets attempted to scare off an American U2 reconnaissance plane that was collecting intelligence on China while flying along the Taiwan Strait in late June.

Beijing's defense ministry said the US must end such flights, calling them a "major obstacle" as the two Pacific powers try to put a series of military disputes behind them, China's state-run Global Times reported.

The flights "severely harmed" mutual trust, the paper quoted the ministry as saying.

"We demand that the US respects China's sovereignty and security interests, and take concrete measures to boost a healthy and stable development of military relations," it added. The defense ministry declined comment to AFP.

In Washington, Pentagon spokesman Colonel Dave Lapan would not give details about the recent episode but said that no U.S. spy plane crossed into Chinese airspace.

"I can say that we fly reconnaissance missions in international airspace routinely and it is not unusual that (China) scrambles fighters," Lapan told reporters.

Lapan said that the issue showed the need for further military dialogue with China -- a priority for Admiral Mike Mullen, who earlier this month became the first chief of the US military to visit China since 2007.

"Part of the reason that we have a desire for a more robust (military) relationship and communication with the Chinese is to prevent things from developing into a crisis," Lapan said.

"There are going to be areas where we don't agree. It's our view that this is a freedom of navigation issue, that we operate in international waters and international airspace," he said.

Sino-U.S. military relations have been plagued in recent years by periodic tensions stemming from U.S. plans for arms sales to Taiwan and naval standoffs in the disputed South China Sea.

Beijing considers Taiwan part of its territory and refuses to abandon the possibility of taking the self-ruled island by force. The two sides split at the end of a civil war.

The United States recognizes Beijing and not Taipei, but provides military support to Taiwan.

In the June encounter, one of the Chinese Sukhoi SU-27 fighters crossed over the Taiwan Strait's middle line, widely considered to be the boundary between Taiwan's airspace and that of the Chinese mainland, Taiwanese media have reported.

One of the Chinese jets did not leave until two Taiwanese planes were sent to intercept it, the island's United Daily News reported.

In April 2001, a U.S. surveillance aircraft and a Chinese fighter jet collided in mid-air, killing a Chinese pilot and forcing the 24-member U.S. crew to make an emergency landing on China's Hainan island. The Americans were freed after 11 days in an early crisis for newly elected President George W Bush.

Mullen, writing in The New York Times on Tuesday, said that he spoke in Beijing with his Chinese counterpart General Chen Bingde about having "more frequent discussions, more exercises, more personnel exchanges."

"A good bit of misunderstanding between our militaries can be cleared up by reaching out to each other. We don't have to give away secrets to make our intentions clear, just open up a little," wrote the outgoing chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

© 2011 Agence France-Presse

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

26 Comments
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Sure. As soon as the Chinese agree to stop trying to hack all the Pentagon's and defense contractors' computers.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

the Pentagon insisted Wednesday it was within its rights.

Does not mean one should be rude, just because its legal.

herefornow, you suggest a very crappy way of bargaining. Surely the spy flights pre-date the hacking attempts. And surely America is doing similar hacking. The point is that the Chinese are not operating spy flights just outside of American territory or America would have a hissy fit and not ask like the Chinese are doing.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Dear China,

Get bent!

When you start listening to us about your treatment of minorities and your actions in the Pacific, then we will consider listening to your complaints. Until then, shut up and sit down.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Ungrateful Chinese. Especially after ex pressie Clinton gave them so many US military secrets and technology.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

WW3

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

china, so what do you have to hide? or is it just sour grapes that you don't have the tech to do the same?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

in the making

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Just tell the Chinese it was a Google Maps "skyview" vehicle. That'll put them at ease...err, uhh, maybe not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

China's spying on on the US is well documented in the news. Recently, 60 Minutes did a piece on it and you can see the full video on their site. Both countries spy on each other so for one to tell the other not to is meaningless swaggering.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Does China have military aircraft fly so close to American territory? Yes, or no? All you seem really happy to change to subject to spying in general, but coming within miles of violating a country's sovereignty with military aircraft is really pushing it.

It may be legal to walk down your street. It may be legal to even stand for a while. But if someone just paced your street staring at your house and trying to look in your windows, would that be okay you think?

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

China doesn't have military aircraft in the area because it doesn't have a relationship strong enough with any country near the US to make it possible. It isn't because they want to be super duper nice, chewitup. They prefer to steal secrets by hacking, using spies, and paying off other countries to see US hardware.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Superlib, that is like saying the USSR was welcome to put missles in Cuba, but the US asked them to please don't.

The Chinese could do the same kind of spy flights too. No partner country is needed, nor does it make it appropriate. I don't know why the Chinese don't do it, nor do I know why they have not sent their military to any but neighboring countries in centuries, but I am not ruling out being nice, and I am also not ruling out the U.S. government just being spiteful.

I don't think its necessary to provoke China like this. But if and when China does similar flights, it sure will be fun to watch the masks come off the second face of posters here.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Just a bit of playing politics, that's all. China itself likes to push Japan in terms of going near and even into its borders, sending over helicoptors, have its subs go by Okinawa, etc. Not sure they're in the best position to be making such requests.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

chewitup: But if and when China does similar flights, it sure will be fun to watch the masks come off the second face of posters here.

Well until then I suppose you and the Chinese government can console each other. And when the time is right in the future you can give each other high fives.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

chewitup

The Chinese could do the same kind of spy flights too.

We both know that PRC does not have the capability to send a jet across the Pacific loiter to gain information and back. PRC doesn't even have enough mid-air re-fueling capabilities to maintain 10 planes in air at a time.

The best PRC could probably do is to send out helicopters from ships passing through the Okinawa isles to take pictures of JMSDF ships that are escorting them through the waters.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

We both know that PRC does not have the capability to send a jet across the Pacific loiter to gain information and back.

Hardly dents my point of what would happen if they did it though. It would become a circus of hypocrisy.

If you need an immediate possibility, how about if China did the same to Japan, citing the fact that Japan harbors a military hostile to China? The Chinese cannot even put ships through international waters and out to sea without getting flak for it. Meanwhile, the sun never sets on the U.S. Empire, and however benign everyone likes to pretend it is, the U.S. is behind far far more war in the last 100 years than China. The U.S. is pretty friggen far from benign. I would like both parties to be reined in.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

chewitup

If you need an immediate possibility, how about if China did the same to Japan, citing the fact that Japan harbors a military hostile to China?

Don't bother PRC already does that and it is becoming more frequent with JASDF doing more scrabbles to intercept PRC fighters. Japan just do go into rage like the PRC.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not just those U-2 spy planes but those spying satellites flying over the outer atmoshpere has got o stop! The ASAT test hinted those sneaky stalking shall not goes without consequences!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The U.S. never should have retired the SR-71.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

chewitup: Meanwhile, the sun never sets on the U.S. Empire, and however benign everyone likes to pretend it is, the U.S. is behind far far more war in the last 100 years than China. The U.S. is pretty friggen far from benign. I would like both parties to be reined in.

Check your baggage at the door. Must be heavy.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@superlib Funny how you're complaing that China is stealing secrets when the US did the same thing to Nazis in WW2. You know the whole abducting Germany scientists and making them work for the US and stealing all the secret Nazi stuff. But they probably don't teach you that in public schools.

As for the pentagon, China hacking into it isn't that big of a deal. If the pentagon's informantion can be stolen by wikileaks and hacked by a DoS attack by lulsez, they really don't have any right to complain to China hacking it.

What's the matter? Does the pentagon have something to hide? Like how it killed all those civilians like it showed in wikileaks?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

LOL, while complaining about nothing, China is softly softly secretly supporting a massive migration program of Chineses into S.E.A, in order to make them all chinese in the future ! The West should start to have huge migration program into China to make them all Western in the future too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It takes two to tango and China has been our allie since long before WWII. It suely wasn't China that brought on Pearl Harbor.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

[“Part of the reason that we have a desire for a more robust (military) relationship and communication with the Chinese is to prevent things from developing into a crisis,” Lapan said]

no no.. they don't need our help to be a Crisis... China IS a Crisis in and of itself.. without anyone's help.

For those who aren't aware, China officially now spends more money on keepings its own citizens in line -defendings against uprisings, revolts, revolutions, protests etc- than it spends on its own military budget. For the first time in history. China isn't prepared for any kind of war because it's own people are so unhappy with the government......unless they're looking for a way to try to coerce a situation of "united hatred" against a common "enemy" to keep people focused on a external bad situation instead of on the INTERNAL bad situation

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Heythia: @superlib Funny how you're complaing that China is stealing secrets when the US did the same thing to Nazis in WW2. You know the whole abducting Germany scientists and making them work for the US and stealing all the secret Nazi stuff. But they probably don't teach you that in public schools.

Uh, I'm not complaining. China is. My point was that countries often try to steal secrets. If the Chinese don't like the spy planes then perhaps they would agree to stop trying to gather information about the US. But that probably won't happen. Your comment about the Nazis is just your own personal baggage that you're attaching to this thread. Useless.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Check your baggage at the door. Must be heavy.

I wish you would check your flippance at the door. America goes around getting up everyone's noses, and you just want to dismiss it? Provoking people is lots of fun for some people and I expect you really love the show. But its childish and rude and sometimes blows up in everyone's faces.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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