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China fires back at US for criticism on fishing curbs

Published on Jan 10, 2014 6:05 PM

BEIJING (REUTERS) - China defended on Friday its new fishing restrictions in disputed waters in the South China Sea against criticism from the United States, saying the rules were in accordance with international law.

The rules, approved by China's southern Hainan province, took effect on Jan 1 and require foreign fishing vessels to obtain approval to enter the waters, which the local government says are under its jurisdiction.

Beijing claims almost the entire oil - and gas-rich South China Sea and rejects rival claims to parts of it from the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia, Brunei and Vietnam.

Washington called the fishing rules "provocative and potentially dangerous", prompting a rebuttal from China's foreign ministry on Friday.

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