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China warns U.S. off island dispute

Sunday, August 26, 2012 - 01:15

Aug. 26 - One of China's top military leaders warns the U.S. not to interfere in a territorial spat between Beijing and Tokyo. Andrew Raven reports.

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These islands in the Pacific Ocean are at the centre of a long-running territorial spat between Japan and China. Both claim the territories, which while little more than rocky outcroppings, sit atop potentially huge underwater gas fields. On Sunday, one of China's senior most military figures warned the United States not to interfere in the dispute. Cai Yingting, a deputy chief in the People's Liberation Army, said during talks in Washington that any intervention would damage ties between the world's two biggest economies. (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) DEPUTY CHIEF OF CHINA'S PEOPLE'S LIBERATION ARMY (PLA) GENERAL STAFF CAI YINGTING SAYING: "We hope the U.S. will do more to safeguard peace in the region and maintain the overall good Sino-U.S. relations." Under a decades old treaty with Japan, the US would be obliged to defend the islands if they came under attack. But Washington has said it would not take sides in the dispute. Chinese and Japanese activists have landed on the islands in recent weeks, flaring diplomatic tensions and sparking protests in both countries.

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China warns U.S. off island dispute

Sunday, August 26, 2012 - 01:15