US releases video of close call in Taiwan Strait with

Akash Arjun

Global Courant

BANGKOK (AP) — The U.S. military released video Monday of what it called an “unsafe” Chinese maneuver in the Taiwan Strait over the weekend in which a Chinese naval vessel sharply cut the path of a U.S. destroyer and forced the U.S. ship to slow down to avoid a collision.

The incident occurred Saturday when the US destroyer USS Chung-Hoon and the Canadian frigate HMCS Montreal conducted a so-called “freedom of navigation” in the strait between Taiwan and mainland China.

China claims the democratically self-governing island of Taiwan as part of its own territory and maintains that the strait is part of its exclusive economic zone, while the US and its allies regularly sail and fly over the passage to emphasize their claim that the waters are international.

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During the transit on Saturday, the Chinese guided-missile destroyer overtook the Chung-Hoon on the port side and then swerved over the bow at a distance of about 137 meters, according to the US Indo-Pacific Command. The US destroyer kept course but reduced speed to 10 knots “to avoid collision,” the military said.

The video released Monday shows the Chinese ship intersecting the course of the American ship and then righting itself to sail in a parallel direction.

The Indo-Pacific Command said the actions violated maritime rules of safe passage in international waters.

The Chinese ship did not attempt a similar maneuver on the Canadian frigate, which was following the American destroyer.

“The transit of Chung-Hoon and Montreal through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the combined commitment of the US and Canada to a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the Indo-Pacific Command said. “The United States military flies, sails and operates safely and responsibly wherever international law permits.”

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The US recently accused China of also carrying out an “unnecessarily aggressive maneuver” in the skies, saying a Chinese J-16 fighter jet flew directly in front of a US Air Force reconnaissance aircraft over southern China late last month. Sea flew.

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The close calls have raised concerns about a possible accident that could lead to an escalation between the two countries’ militaries at a time when tensions are already high in the region.

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The Taiwan Strait incident came on a day when both US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and China’s Defense Secretary General Li Shangfu were in Singapore for an annual defense conference.

Li suggested on Sunday that the US and its allies created the danger with their patrols and wanted to provoke China.

“The best way is for the countries, especially countries’ naval vessels and fighter jets, not to carry out closure actions around the territory of other countries,” he said through an interpreter. “What’s the point of going there? In China we always say: ‘Mind your own business.’”

Austin had invited Li to talk on the sidelines of the conference; Li refused.

US releases video of close call in Taiwan Strait with

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