South China Sea tensions surge as China lands plane on artificial island




 
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South China Sea tensions surge as China lands plane on artificial island
 
January 5th, 2016  
News Manager
 

Topic: South China Sea tensions surge as China lands plane on artificial island


South China Sea tensions surge as China lands plane on artificial island
By Greg Torode and Michael Martina HONG KONG/BEIJING (Reuters) - China's first landing of a plane on one of its new island runways in the South China Sea shows Beijing's facilities in the disputed region are being completed on schedule and military flights will inevitably follow, foreign officials and analysts said. China's increasing military presence in the disputed sea could effectively lead to a Beijing-controlled air defense zone, they said, ratcheting up tensions with other claimants and with the United States in one of the world's most volatile areas. Chinese foreign ministry officials confirmed on Saturday that a test flight by a civilian plane landed on an artificial island built in the Spratlys, the first time Beijing has used a runway in the area.




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