Diaoyu Islands

China hits out anew at US bill on Taiwan arms sales, Diaoyus

PUBLISHED : Monday, 24 December, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 24 December, 2012, 5:57am


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China yesterday reiterated its opposition to provisions in a United States defence bill that allow sales of F-16 fighter aircraft to Taiwan and acknowledge Japan's administration of the disputed Diaoyu Islands.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said China was "seriously concerned" about the legislation approved by the US Senate last Friday and urged the United States to promote the "stable development" of relations with China.

Meanwhile, Japan's NHK broadcaster reported yesterday that the coastguard spotted a Chinese government aircraft flying near the Diaoyus, known as the Senkaku Islands in Japan, on Saturday. Only after Japan sent an F-15 fighter jet did the Chinese Y-12 aircraft fly away from the airspace, it said.

The US defence bill, which authorises Department of Defence programmes and spending for the 2013 fiscal year that started on October 1, will now go to President Barack Obama to sign into law.

The two amendments related to China would harm relations between the world's two biggest economies, Xinhua said in a commentary last week.

It said the Obama administration should reject the provisions to help foster a new type of relationship based on mutual respect and benefit.

The section relating to the disputed islands, which stated that the US "acknowledges the administration of Japan over the Senkaku Islands", constitutes "a gross violation of China's sovereign rights", Xinhua said.

The amendment calling for the sale of advanced fighter jets to Taiwan broke previous pledges made by the US to phase out arms sales to the island, it added.