Mustafa AY – TDO – 04.07.2017 - Within the maritime borders of South China Sea, conflict between USA and China has been increasingly exacerbating. China’s expanding influence on the region occupies the minds of US and Japanese government’s office holders apparently. China promoted its influence through domestically-built latest generation destroyer “type 055” and soviet-built aircraft-carrier Liaoning which helps China seems to be a deterrent power in the eyes of regional and non-regional actors. Literally, China’s increasing capacity in naval power undermines US-Japanese regional authority as Liaoning aircraft carrier has lots of available-to-take off aircrafts to intervene into the entry of foreign military and private vessels into the region. This naval force serves as a patrol in the region.

After China invaded the islands named Meiji, Spratly and Yongshun, US government commenced to deploy missile-guided destroyer of USS Stethem. Through this move, US government seems to hamper China’s elbow room in the region. The motive lying behind US government chose this option is to the imminent threat posed by that Chinese government would legitimize its occupation by annexation. If Chinese government achieve the annexation plan, the possible implication for USA and the neighboring countries would be those:

  1. After China consolidated its authority in the region through seizing control of islands, China will be rightful in terms of UN international maritime law (UNCLOS) to conduct Oceanographic searches on the field.
  2. After China consolidated its authority in the region, harbor’s grip will be monitored by China. Then, China will make money through tariffing both domestic and alien corporations.
  3. After China consolidated its authority in the region, free trade and free circulation in the sea will be attained.

US government tries to oversee the occupation of the region on the pretext of operation “FONOP” by deploying USS Stethem within 12 nautical miles far from artificial island built up by China. Above this happening, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman – Lu Kang – stated “US government contravened Chinese territorial waters and this is an evident agitation that disturb us.”. This shows how threatening the situation is.

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