[QODLink]
Asia-Pacific

US says airlines should observe China zone

Reported scrambling of "combat aircraft" by China, including at least two fighter jets, threatens to escalate situation.

Last updated: 30 Nov 2013 02:59
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
China announced that it was extending air defence identification zone over disputed islands [Reuters]

US commercial airlines should observe China's demand to be given notice of aircraft entering its newly declared air defence zone, the State Department has said.

The Pentagon earlier indicated that American military forces would continue normal operations, despite China scrambling fighter jets to monitor US and Japanese aircraft in the area.

China's announcement last weekend that it was extending an air defence identification zone (ADIZ) over islands disputed by China and Japan was disregarded by several nations, and US B-52 bombers entered the area.

"We have flights routinely transiting international airspace throughout the Pacific, including the area China is including in their ADIZ," said Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steve Warren said on Friday.

"These flights are consistent with long-standing and well-known US freedom of navigation policies that are applied in many areas of operation around the world. I can confirm that the US has and will continue to operate in the area as normal."

Compliance by commercial flights "does not indicate US government acceptance of China's requirements for operating in the newly declared defence," the State Department said in a statement.

Echoing previous statements by the US administration, it said the US was "deeply concerned" by China's declaration of the air zone.

Japan, South Korea, the US and other countries have accused Beijing of increasing regional tensions with the air defense zone.

But the scrambling of "several combat aircraft" by China, including at least two fighter jets - according to state news agency Xinhua - threatens to escalate the situation.

"Several combat aircraft were scrambled to verify the identities" of US and Japanese aircraft entering the air defense zone, Xinhua said, quoting air force spokesman Shen Jinke.

The Chinese aircraft identified two US surveillance aircraft and 10 Japanese aircraft, including an F-15 warplane, Shen said.

293

Source:
AFP
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
Friends of Steven Sotloff, allegedly the second journalist shown in Islamic State beheading video, call for his release.
Cut off from bulk of Tunisia's economic development, residents of rural towns are creating their own opportunities.
Craft breweries see rising sales, challenging large corporations for a bigger taste of Mexico's $20bn beer market.
Frustration grows in Kiev as pledges to end corruption and abuse of power stagnate after Maidan Square protest.
Students kept from using screen-based technology for five days showed improvement in recognizing emotion, US study says.
join our mailing list