China denounces US military’s annual report

China denounces US military’s annual report


China’s Ministry of National Defense has denounced the US Defense Department’s annual report to Congress on military and security developments involving China in 2015. The ministry urged the US to stop activities that damage China-US relations.

Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said in a press conference on Saturday, that China is strongly dissatisfied with the US’s hyped statement in the report on “China’s military threats” and a so-called “lack of transparency”. Yang said that China absolutely opposes the distorted comments made by the US on China’s military reforms, overseas military action, weaponry developments and defense budgets and on its regional affairs. The report by the Pentagon had also unfairly depicted China’s legitimate activities in the East China Sea and South China Sea, Yang said.

The report spoke of “China’s increasingly assertive efforts to advance its national sovereignty and territorial claims” as factors pushing other countries “to enhance their ties to the United States.” However, this runs counter to the statement made by various Arab countries earlier this week at the 7th Ministerial Meeting of China-Arab Cooperation Forum, in which Xinhua reported that the participating countries supported China’s efforts to peacefully resolve territorial issues in the region.

On April 29, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov held a joint press conference with his counterpart Wang Yi in Beijing, where he commented that Russia opposes “interference from third parties” and “attempts to internationalize” the South China Sea issue, stressing that “only parties to the conflict can resolve the dispute through direct talks.”

Yang said that China’s military reform is aimed at protecting national sovereignty and territorial integrity. He said construction on the Nansha islands is for national defense purposes and civil requirements, as well as to better fulfill international responsibilities.

The spokesman said the United States constantly criticizes China’s legitimate actions, but continues to strengthen its military deployment and send warships to the South China Sea. He called on the US to take concrete action to promote healthy and stable bilateral military ties.

Yang noted that the annual military report published by the US damages mutual trust between the two countries, and goes against the development and momentum behind the bilateral ties of the militaries of both sides.

Yin Zhuo, a senior researcher in the People’s Liberation Army Navy as well as director of the Navy Information Modernization Committee, says that the military budget of the US is around four or five times that of China’s, accounting for around 4.5% of the country’s GDP, with Beijing’s military spending only 1.49%. He added that China’s maritime actions are also one of the focuses of the enormous US spending on its armed forces, and accused Washington of looking to bring up more territorial disputes in China’s waters to contain Beijing’s economic development.


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