The U.S. Navy warship USS John McCain, an Arleigh-Burke class destroyer.
© AP Photo/ Bullit Marquez
Beijing Slams Washington's Plans for Navel 'Incursion' Into South China Sea
The journalist noted that Washington's move could also be viewed as a response to China taking part in the Sino-Russian maritime exercise held in the Mediterranean in May.
The controversial and yet unconfirmed deployment needs to be authorized by the Obama administration and could take place in the next two weeks. The US is expected to send at least one ship to within 12 nautical miles of the archipelago in an apparent bid to demonstrate that Washington does not recognize Beijing's sovereignty in this area.
The Pentagon's recent plans have not been welcomed with open arms in Beijing. Foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying warned the US against taking any provocative steps in the region and reaffirmed that China would not allow any nation to violate the country's territorial waters and airspace in the Spratly Islands.
Spratly group of islands in the South China Sea, west of Palawan