U.S. 'disinvites' China from Pacific Rim 2018 naval exercises over 'militarization'

США отменили участие Китая в военных маневрах в Тихом океане

США отменили участие Китая в военных маневрах в Тихом океане

But the Pentagon's decision to boot Beijing from RIMPAC suggests US officials realize the FONOPS were not enough to deter China, says Harry Kazianis, director of Defense Studies at the Center for the National Interest.

China could create an air defence identification zone to spot incursions into its claimed sovereign airspace, something it did in the East China Sea in 2013 amid a dispute over the Senkaku islands with Japan, Choong said.

Logan added that Xi had broken a promise he made to the worldwide community that China would not militarise the Spratly Islands.

Cronin said the decision was unlikely to alter China's plans for the South China Sea.

The Pentagon directly called on China to remove military systems from the disputed South China Sea features, recalling Chinese president Xi Jinping's promise not to militarize the area. That followed reports of China deploying anti-ship cruise missiles and surface-to-air missiles on the disputed Spratly Islands.

"China's landing of bomber aircraft at Woody Island has also raised tensions", Logan said, referring to one of the Paracel islands in the northern part of the strategic waterway.

Fanell noted that despite Chinese participation in the exercises there was no slowing of construction and militarization in the South China Sea. The US Navy periodically conducts "freedom of navigation" operations in which naval vessels sail close to the Chinese-claimed militarized islets.

The decision to withdraw China's invitation was made by Defense Secretary James Mattis in coordination with the White House, according to a U.S. official, after Beijing's recent deployment of missile systems and the first landing of a Chinese bomber on an island in the South China Sea.

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"Any forces deployed to the islands would easily overwhelm the military forces of any other South China Sea-claimants", Davidson told a congressional panel.

Depriving China of its access to RIMPAC doesn't dangerously degrade U.S.

In short, while Mr. Trump has been ineptly seeking an unfeasible reduction in the US merchandise deficit with China, the regime has quietly stolen a march in another theater. More than 1,000 military personnel from 27 countries will take part.

But the town is on Subi reef in the Spratlys archipelago of the hotly contested South China Sea and, regional security experts believe, could soon be home to China's first troops based in the maritime heart of Southeast Asia.

RIMPAC enabled the armed forces of the world's two largest economies to directly engage with each other. However, Beijing, which has participated in the RIMPAC since 2014, has not given a public response on behalf of the Chinese government, accepting their disinvite as of yet.

The US withdrawal of an invitation to such a symbolic event comes at a hard time in relations between the two sides and is potentially just the first setback in military exchanges between them, said Zhang Yuquan, an global relations specialist at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou.

He said China's activity in the South China Sea was for self-defense and that it was done on a "much smaller scale" than what the United States had done in Hawaii and Guam. "China's behaviour is inconsistent with the principles and purposes of the Rimpac exercise".

"I also want to stress that it is the US who proposed to enhance mil-to-mil exchanges between the two countries in the first place". Ahead of the talks, the United States needs Beijing, North Korea's chief economic backer, to maintain pressure on Pyongyang.

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