Photo taken on Jan. 6 shows Chinese soldiers are on patrol on a breakwater on the Yongshu Jiao at the South China Sea. (Xinhua/Zha Chunming)
BEIJING, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) -- Perhaps in an attempt to impress his Japanese colleague, British ambassador to the United States Kim Darroch told a Washington think tank Thursday that British fighter planes visiting Japan will fly over the South China Sea.
Such remarks create the impression that London may soon deviate from a largely aloof attitude over the South China Sea issue and start playing a meddling role there like the United States and Japan.
Should a British warplane embark on a so-called "freedom of navigation" mission in the South China Sea, it would only serve to further complicate the issue and weigh on thriving China-Britain ties.
Thanks to tons of biased Western media reports and a string of irresponsible U.S. military maneuvers in the South China Sea in the past few years, freedom of navigation now seems like a ready excuse for outsider parties to impose themselves over the issue, but the reality is that there's never been any problem with the legitimate passage of ships and planes in the area.
With trillions of dollars worth of goods traversing the patch of water every year, the South China Sea is vital both to global trade and to China's development.
China itself needs unimpeded passage in the body of water more than any other country, and maintaining peace and stability has been the overriding consideration of its South China Sea policy.
Meanwhile, despite the fact that some Chinese islands in the South China Sea have been illegally occupied by other countries, Beijing has always insisted on settling the disputes through peaceful means.
British policymakers should be well aware that by copying provocative actions of Washington and Tokyo over the South China Sea, it stands to lose on at least two sides: its credibility as as responsible global player and its relations with China.
At a time when the memory is still fresh for many about the opening of the golden era for China-Britain ties, Darroch's South China Sea remarks indeed struck an alarming note.
The good atmosphere surrounding China-Britain relations is the result of years of joint efforts and it is most unwise to mar the prospects of the thriving ties by threatening hardly justified military maneuvers.
London, May 4 (Xinhua) -- Liu Xiaoming, Chinese ambassador to Britain, has demanded stopping meddling in the South China Sea dispute by some politicians and media outlets in the United States and Britain, in a signed article to the Times published Wednesday.
"The issue of the South China Sea is being ramped up by those in the US and the UK who accuse China of causing tension in the region. They proclaim the principle of free navigation and over-flight but in reality their prejudice and partiality will only increase tension," he said.
Their suggestion that China's "hard line" position about the sea increases friction is not based on fact, Liu said, pointing out that China was the first country to discover and name the Nansha islands and reefs and the first to govern them. Full story