Russia, China to Begin Joint Naval Drills in South China Sea on Monday

Russia, China to Begin Joint Naval Drills in South China Sea on Monday
Sun Sep 11, 2016 17:20:52

China and Russia will commence eight-day naval drills in the disputed South China Sea on Monday, Beijing has announced.

In a statement released on Sunday, the Chinese navy said the “Joint Sea-2016” exercises, which are to be conducted in an area off China’s southeastern province of Guangdong, will feature ships, submarines, fixed-wing aircraft and ship-borne helicopters.

The two countries will carry out defense, rescue, and anti-submarine operations, as well as “island seizing” and other activities, the statement added.

Describing the exercises as “the largest operation ever” conducted jointly by the two countries, the Chinese Navy further stressed that the forces will participate in live-fire drills, island defense and landing operations.

The South China Sea is the subject of a territorial dispute between China and several regional countries.

In July, a Hague-based court of arbitration ruled that China’s claim of sovereignty over disputed areas in the sea or its resources had no legal basis. The case was filed by the Philippines, whose economic and sovereign rights, the court said, had been violated by Beijing.

This file photo shows Chinese and Russian naval vessels participating in joint exercises in the East China Sea, May 24, 2014. (By Reuters)

China has dismissed the ruling, saying it does not recognize the tribunal’s arbitration in the dispute.

Beijing claims almost all of the South China Sea, which is also claimed in part by Taiwan, Brunei, Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines. The contested waters are rich in oil and gas.

China and Russia have increased their military training cooperation in recent years. The two countries have been holding naval drills in the Pacific waters since 2012.

The United States, too, has moved to step up its military cooperation with its allies in the region, who are China’s rival claimants in the territorial dispute.

The presence of the US in the region has upset regional powers China and Russia, which say such extra-regional presence serves to inflame tensions among countries.

S/SH 11

string(1893) "[{"id":"1809190","sort":"3622128","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/04/17/alalam_635965101365676920_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"China Launches Massive Wargames in South China Sea"} ,{"id":"1816712","sort":"3622129","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/05/10/alalam_635984968560766358_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"China Slams US Warship Patrol in Disputed South China Sea"} ,{"id":"1825241","sort":"3622130","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/06/05/alalam_636007213935640817_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Kerry Warns China: Air Defense Zone over South China Sea ‘Provocative’"} ,{"id":"1835495","sort":"3622131","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/07/05/alalam_636033249670513791_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Beijing Must Be Ready for Military Confrontation in South China Sea: Daily"} ,{"id":"1835895","sort":"3622132","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/07/06/alalam_636034283544209908_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"VIDEO: Military Drills in South China Sea Targets No Country"} ,{"id":"1836440","sort":"3622133","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/07/08/alalam_636035797615556470_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Philippines Willing to Share South China Sea: Govt."} ,{"id":"1840360","sort":"3622134","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/07/18/alalam_636044753756756939_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"VIDEO: China Air Force Patrols South China Sea Air Space amid Tensions with US"} ,{"id":"1848139","sort":"3622135","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/08/08/alalam_636062726884870555_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"VIDEO: American Warship Visits China amid Tensions in South China Sea"} ,{"id":"1856621","sort":"3622136","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/08/31/alalam_636082475561151752_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Kerry Says United with Allies over South China Sea"} ,{"id":"1859195","sort":"3622137","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/09/07/alalam_636088621743596218_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Japan ‘Seriously Concerned’ about China Claims in South China Sea: Japan PM"} ]"