U.S. says China air defense zone unacceptable, shouldn't be implemented

WASHINGTON Thu Dec 5, 2013 4:29pm EST

A group of disputed islands, Uotsuri island (top), Minamikojima (bottom) and Kitakojima, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China is seen in the East China Sea, in this photo taken by Kyodo September 2012. REUTERS/Kyodo

A group of disputed islands, Uotsuri island (top), Minamikojima (bottom) and Kitakojima, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China is seen in the East China Sea, in this photo taken by Kyodo September 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Kyodo

Related Topics


Under the Iron Dome

Sirens sound as rockets land deep inside Israel.  Slideshow 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House said on Thursday that China's new air defense zone over the East China Sea was "unacceptable" and urged Beijing not to implement it, but stopped short of calling for it to rescind its declaration.

Keeping up U.S. criticism, White House spokesman Jay Carney assailed China for a "dangerous and provocative" move that increased the risk of stumbling into a crisis, and said that was not consistent with the behavior of a major power.

"We, the United States, do not recognize and we do not accept it, and will not change the way the United States conducts military operations in the region," Carney told reporters.

China's decision last month to declare an air defense identification zone in an area that includes islands at the heart of a territorial dispute with Japan has triggered protests from Washington as well as Tokyo and Seoul, close U.S. allies.

The United States has made clear it will stand by treaty obligations that require it to defend the Japanese-controlled islands, but it is also reluctant to get dragged into any military clash between rivals Japan and China.

Under the zone's rules, all aircraft have to report flight plans to Chinese authorities, maintain radio contact and reply promptly to identification inquiries. U.S., Japanese and South Korean military aircraft have breached the zone without informing Beijing since it was announced on November 23.

U.S. officials, including Vice President Joe Biden during a visit to Beijing this week, have put pressure on China but are maintaining a cautious line, apparently seeking to keep tensions from rising further.

At Thursday's White House briefing, Carney dismissed as "semantics" reporters' questions on whether the United States wanted China to rescind its declaration or whether Washington could accept a solution that allowed for the existence of the zone as long as Beijing did not enforce it.

"I have - and others have - made clear it is unacceptable," Carney said. "We call on China not to implement it. I think if you don't implement it, that effectively ... I think that's pretty clear about what our policy is. We do not recognize it."

Carney also urged China to refrain from similar actions in the region and to work with other countries, including Japan and South Korea, on confidence-building measures, including emergency communications channels, "to address the dangers its recent announcement has created."

The top U.S. military officer, General Martin Dempsey, said American operations in the region would be unchanged and that Washington made clear to China that territorial disputes should not be resolved "unilaterally and through coercion."

"We all benefit from stability in the Pacific, and I assess that the Chinese are clever enough to realize that," Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a Facebook "Town Hall" forum.

(Additional reporting by Jeff Mason, Steve Holland and Phil Stewart; Editing by Peter Cooney)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (34)
DeanMJackson wrote:
Biden said, “That’s why China will bear increasing responsibility to contribute positively to peace and security. That means taking steps to reduce the risk of accidental conflict and miscalculation …”

In fact, the significance of China’s saber rattling over rocks in the water must be analyzed under the rubric of the Long-Range Policy*, where in the near future limited hostilities will breakout between China and Japan, leaving China bloodied. Losing face, the incompetent behavior of the PLAN will be used by the Chinese Communist Party as one excuse for the fraudulent collapse of the Beijing government, it’s ‘democratic’ replacement being manned by agents of the Chinese Communist government.

Russia and Japan’s current diplomatic moves are to pave the way for the upcoming conflict Japan will have with China, where Japan will request that Russia mediate a cease fire. The successful Russian mediation will then be used to further increase Russia’s prominence in the eyes of the world.

*What is the Long-Range Policy (LRP), you ask? The LRP is the “new” strategy all Communist nations signed onto in 1960 to defeat the West with. The last major disinformation operation under the LRP was the “collapse” of the USSR in 1991.

The next major disinformation operation under the LRP will be the fraudulent collapse of the Chinese Communist government. When that occurs, Taiwan will be stymied from not joining the mainland. This is why China is buying up gold all over the word. It is believed that China currently has 3,000 [metric] tonnes of gold. When China has 6,000 [metric] tonnes it will have the minimum gold reserves necessary for its currency, the yuan, to replace the United States’ dollar as the world’s reserve currency, that is after the fraudulent collapse of the Chinese Communist government (the United States gold reserves is approximately 8,133.5 [metric] tonnes).

The fraudulent “collapse” of the USSR (and East Bloc) couldn’t have been pulled off until both political parties in the United States (and political parties elsewhere in the West) were co-opted by Moscow & Allies, which explains why verification of the “collapse” was never undertaken by the West, such verification being (1) a natural administrative procedure (since the USSR wasn’t occupied by Western military forces); and (2) necessary for the survival of the West. Recall President Reagan’s favorite phrase, “Trust, but verify”.

Dec 04, 2013 11:02pm EST  --  Report as abuse
China_Lies wrote:
Once again we see the greed and arrogance of China’s land grabbing.

This ADIZ was established by China with one purpose….to give China an excuse to start a war with Japan by shooting down a Japanese plane that enters the space and then claiming it was out of self defense.

It’s time China starts ACTING like a responsible power, and not just SAYING that they are!

Dec 04, 2013 11:19pm EST  --  Report as abuse
GeeZee wrote:
Japan’s claim of the control is based on a 1970 deal with the US, in which the US transferred the “administrative control” over Okinawa to Japan in return for $2B in cash. The deal specifically pointed out that the sovereignty of the territory was not included. This actually makes the deal automatically illegal, because the US government agreed in the Cairo Declaration in 1944 that both Taiwan and Okinawa would be returned to China. Since China (or at least Taiwan, which represents a continuation of the Chinese government participating in the Cairo Declaration) has sovereign over these disputed islands, the US has no rights to sell the administration rights to a third party.

Dec 05, 2013 1:50am EST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.