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Chinese ships patrol area contested by Malaysia

Published on Jan 26, 2014 5:27 PM
A Chinese patrol vessel in shown in this photo taken on January 27, 2011. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIJING (REUTERS) - Three Chinese ships on Sunday patrolled the James Shoal, an area also claimed by Malaysia, and soldiers and officers on board swore to safeguard its sovereignty, in the latest sign of Beijing's territorial assertiveness in the South China Sea.

The group was made up of an amphibious landing craft, the Changbaishan, and two destroyers, state news agency Xinhua said.

"During the ceremony held in the Zengmu Reef area, soldiers and officers aboard swore an oath of determination to safeguard the country's sovereignty and maritime interests," Xinhua said.

Zengmu Reef is the Chinese term for James Shoal.

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