BREAKING: China Just Made BIG Move To Defy Trump Admin- Here’s What We Know

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Just 2 days after President Trump’s defense secretary, James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis visited Japan and vowed to defend the Senkaku islands, China sent a message to the U.S. by sailing three warships near the islands.

The ships sailed within Japan’s territorial waters some 12 nautical miles off the islands in the East China Sea, roughly 140 miles northeast of Taiwan, a U.S. defense official told Fox News.

On his first overseas trip as defense secretary, Mattis, speaking in Tokyo, said China “has shredded the trust” of countries in the region by building up man-made islands in the South China Sea. He also said the U.S. commitment to protect Japanese territory applied to its islands in the East China Sea.

Japan has laid claim to the islands since the late 19th-century. China has claimed the islands since the end of World War II.

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“I made clear that our long-standing policy on the Senkaku Islands stands. The U.S. will continue to recognize Japanese administration of the islands,” Mattis said. “As such, Article 5 of the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty applies.” Article 5 commits the U.S. to defend Japan or its territories if attacked.

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Following Mattis’ pledge, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said, “We urge the U.S. side to take a responsible attitude, stop making wrong remarks… and avoid making the issue more complicated and bringing instability to the regional situation.”

Chinese government ships intruded in Japanese waters at least 34 times in 2016, The Japan Times reported.

This latest incident follows other recent provocations in the region.

China has flown nuclear-capable bombers around other contested islands, including the Spratly Islands, six times this year. The latest flight took place on Sunday.

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Back in November, China flew a pair of nuclear-capable bombers around Taiwan for the first time.

Japan sent eight F-15 fighter jets to intercept the Chinese bombers.

 at Fox News reports that back in late December, China placed hundreds of surface-to-air missiles on Hainan Island off mainland China, which intelligence officials say could one day be moved to China’s man-made islands in the South China Sea to better defend them.

Secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, declared that China’s buildup in the South China Sea was “akin to Russia’s taking Crimea” from Ukraine.

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“We’re going to have to send China a clear signal that, first, the island-building stops and, second, your access to those islands also is not going to be allowed,” he said.

 

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