BEIJING (Xinhua) -- Chinese Defense Ministry here on Saturday urged the U.S. side to stop close-in surveillance of China, and create a sound atmosphere for bilateral military ties.
The ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said in a statement that one U.S. anti-submarine plane and one patrol aircraft flew to an airspace about 220 kilometers east of China's Hainan Island to conduct close-in surveillance Tuesday morning, and then a Chinese fighter jet took off to make regular identification and verification.
Commenting on relevant criticism made by the U.S. side, Yang said that was "totally groundless," as the Chinese pilot, with professional operation, kept the jet within a safe distance from the U.S. aircraft.
It was U.S. massive and frequent close-in surveillance of China that endanger the two sides' air and marine security, and is the root of accidents, he said.
China urged the U.S. side to abide by international law and international practice, respect concerns of the coastal countries, and properly deal with the differences between the two sides on air and marine security issues, he said.
Yang said that the U.S. side should follow the principle of non-conflict, non-confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, take concrete actions, reduce and finally stop close-in surveillance of China, so as to create a sound atmosphere for bilateral military ties.