11 December 2019

China slams Japan remarks on air defense zone, Xinhua says

Japan’s remarks on the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone are “absolutely groundless and unacceptable”, Xinhua news agency cited Yang Yujun, spokesman for China’s Ministry of National Defense, as saying. China declared the zone in the East China Sea on Saturday, which covers the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku islands. Japan lodged a protest in response to the move. Yang defended the initiative, saying it followed international practices, reiterating that China’s move aims to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial and airspace safety. Having established its own air defense identification zone in the late 1960s, Japan has no right to make irresponsible remarks on China’s set-up of such zone, he said. Asked to comment on the US Department of Defence’s “concern” over the issue, Yang urged Washington to respect China’s national security and make concrete efforts for the peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.

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