The U.S. Army is sending warships into the waters within the 12-nautical-mile radius of China’s island reefs in the South China Sea, causing international uproar. The Americans are showing off their military force by sailing near the islands in the South China Sea. They are inciting trouble and becoming the troublemakers of the western Pacific Ocean; they are causing raised eyebrows in the international community and resentment among the Chinese population.
The South China Sea was never originally problematic; the U.S. has come and turned it into a problem. Harmony and stability in the South China Sea were not easily achieved, but were the results of the hard work of China and the other parties involved in the dispute. The U.S. sending its warships on “cruises” is undoubtedly a disruption, and is causing huge waves in the formerly calm and peaceful South China Sea. China’s minister of foreign affairs, Wang Yi, expressed that if it were true, he would advise the U.S. to think and think again, to not act without thinking and not to cause trouble where there is no need to do so.
As everybody knows, the U.S. and China maintain communication on different levels regarding the issue of the South China Sea. The U.S. position toward China is clear. As the two most important countries in the Pacific Ocean upholding peace in the sea, both countries together play constructive roles, and this joint effort is not only capable of benefiting the citizens of both nations, but will also have the power to promote peace and stability throughout both the Asia-Pacific region and the world. Last month, the leaders of the U.S. and China reached an agreement over “maintaining constructive communication” regarding the South China Sea. At the time, President Obama expressed that he believed both sides capable of managing their differences and agreeing to develop positive interaction over issues such as the South China Sea, and made it clear that both nations are completely able to reach an agreement through negotiation and turn their differences of opinion into areas of cooperation.
With that declaration still ringing in our ears, the U.S. has now sent warships “cruising” in the waters close to our island reefs in the South China Sea; its repeatedly fickle conduct is astonishing. This kind of provocation is irresponsible toward the peace and stability of the South China Sea and surrounding regions; it goes against international righteousness and the United States’ own promises.
The U.S. is carrying out its overt operation in the South China Sea under the pretense of defending freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, but this in itself is a false proposition. As everybody knows, the Spratly Islands have been Chinese territory since ancient times, and China has an abundant history and jurisprudence in respect of this. The situation in the South China Sea is generally stable due to the joint effort of all parties involved. The South China Sea is China’s important passage for international trade, and more than any other country China needs peace, security and stability within the region. China, together with ASEAN member states, is actively striving to achieve effective all-around implementation of the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, and to actively drive forward negotiations regarding the code of conduct [established for] the South China Sea.
China’s defense of parts of the Spratly Islands and reefs is to protect its constructions and installations there, which neither affects nor relates to any other country, and should not be over-analyzed. China’s island reef construction is mainly in order to improve the living conditions of those working on the islands, to provide appropriate international public goods and services, and to contribute to further defending freedom of navigation and security in the South China Sea.
There are those who wish to make trouble, but China is not afraid of becoming involved in the situation. During a recent interview with Reuters News Agency, Premier Xi Jinping emphasized that all islands in the South China Sea have been Chinese territory since ancient times, and were left to the Chinese by their ancestors. The Chinese people will not allow anyone to infringe on China's sovereignty and related rights and interests in the South China Sea.