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China sends 40 fighter jets to South China Sea amid rising tensions with U.S.

Updated: 2013-12-18 (KST)
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China has dispatched 40 of its Jian-10 fighter jets to the South China Sea, according to a Chinese military paper on Tuesday.
The move is widely perceived as an attempt to prevent additional standoffs with the United States in international waters.
The United States, over the weekend, revealed that one of its warships was approached by a Chinese navy ship last month in the South China Sea.
Despite radio warnings, the U.S. says the Chinese vessel did not stop, forcing the U.S. ship to take evasive action just 450 meters from collision.
The incident underscores the rising tensions between China and the U.S. following Beijing's newly declared air zone further north in the East China Sea.
It's also prompted Washington to defend its right to sail freely in international waters to raise a formal protest against China through both diplomatic and military channels.
China has yet to issue a formal statement on the near-collision.
China lays claim to most of South China Sea, including ones also claimed by neighboring countries like Vietnam and the Philippines.
Yoo Li-an, Arirang News.

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