US officials told that US Navy destroyer USS Mustin carried out a “freedom of navigation” operation.
The destroyer came with 12 nautical miles of an artificial island built by China in the South China Sea.
The officials disclosed that USS Mustin traveled very close to Mischief Reef in the Spratly Islands. Several maneuvering operations were carried out.
China has major territorial disputes with its neighbors over the area.
China’s claims most of the South China Sea. The claim is contested by Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam.
The route is significant as about $5 trillion in trade through shipping passes each year.
Countries like US, Japan and India have no claims in the area and want ‘Freedom of Navigation’ as per international maritime laws.
China has tried imposing a unilateral decision as per which all ships navigating in the area needs to identify itself to the Chinese Navy.
Credit to : Defense Updates