BEIJING China's Defence Ministry said on Wednesday it had monitored the entire progress of two unarmed U.S. B-52 bombers that flew over disputed islands in the East China Sea on a training mission without informing Beijing.
The U.S. move was in defiance of China's declaration of a new airspace defence zone, and raised the stakes in a territorial standoff.
"The Chinese air force monitored the entire course and identified (them) in a timely way, ascertaining that they were U.S. aircraft," the ministry said in a statement on its website.
"The Chinese side has the ability to effectively manage and control the relevant airspace," it added.
(Reporting by Ben Blanchard and Hui Li)