China’s military has slammed the US over the ‘exciting’ fighter jet incident

China's military has slammed the US over the 'exciting' fighter jet incident

Chinese Army

NOS news

Beijing has responded strongly to US allegations that a fighter jet crashed in the South China Sea. Chinese military says US pilot made dangerous maneuvers Washington says a Chinese pilot acted recklessly.

On December 21, the two military aircraft came within a few meters of each other. According to the United States, the US RC-135 spy plane was forced to divert as a Chinese J-11 fighter jet came too close. The US military released video footage of the incident a few days ago.


The Chinese military has also released pictures of the current threatening situation. In State newspaper Global Times A Chinese official has accused the US of slandering and “hyping” the incident. He argues that the American pilot acted “suddenly” and put the Chinese fighter jet in grave danger.

Check out pictures from both cockpits here:

American and Chinese warplanes are getting dangerously close

I don’t know whose fault the video footage was released. Both videos last about 30 seconds and show the two devices getting closer, but it’s not clear who is taking the initiative. Both sides claim they have complied with international rules – the other has not.

The collision between the two aircraft eventually ended in a melee. But if two military aircraft approach each other too closely, the possibility of an accident is real, resulting in potential escalation.

A geopolitical battle for the South China Sea

The incident further strained the already tense relationship between the US and China. With control of the South China Sea at stake, the two superpowers and their allies have been embroiled in a geopolitical tussle for years. Beijing believes that almost the entire sea should be under direct Chinese influence, while countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan also claim part of it.

The Permanent Court of Arbitration for International Disputes ruled in 2016 that China should not exercise jurisdiction over the territory claimed by the Philippines. But that hasn’t stopped China from increasing its military presence in the disputed sea. For example, the country has built artificial islands with runways for the Chinese Air Force.

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