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China blames US for stoking tensions in South China Sea

Published on May 9, 2014 5:04 PM
 
A Chinese ship (right) uses water cannon on a Vietnamese Sea Guard ship on the South China Sea near the Paracels islands, in this handout photo taken on May 3, 2014. China's foreign ministry blamed the United States on Friday for stoking tensions in the disputed South China Sea by encouraging countries to engage in dangerous behaviour, following an uptick in tensions between China and both the Philippines and Vietnam. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIJING (REUTERS) - China's foreign ministry blamed the United States on Friday for stoking tensions in the disputed South China Sea by encouraging countries to engage in dangerous behaviour, following an uptick in tensions between China and both the Philippines and Vietnam.

China this week accused Vietnam of intentionally colliding with its ships in the South China Sea after Vietnam asserted that Chinese vessels used water cannon and rammed eight of its vessels at the weekend near an oil rig.

The United States has called China's deployment of the rig "provocative and unhelpful" to security in the region, urging restraint on all sides.

Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying repeated that the waters the rig was operating in, around the Paracel Islands, were Chinese territory and that no other country had the right to interfere. "It must be pointed out that the recent series of irresponsible and wrong comments from the United States which neglect the facts about the relevant waters have encouraged certain counties' dangerous and provocative behaviour," Hua told a daily news briefing. "We urge the United States to act in accordance with maintaining the broader picture of regional peace and security, and act and speak cautiously on the relevant issue, stop making irresponsible remarks and do more to maintain regional peace and stability," she added.

 
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