China's invitation dropped for 2018 RimPac

US ‘disinvites’ China from Pacific Rim 2018 naval exercises over ‘militarization

It came just days after China's air force landed an advanced H-6K strategic bomber on Woody Island in the Paracel group and deployed radar position, anti-ship and surface-to-air missiles on three newly built features on Fiery Cross Reef, Mischief Reef and Subi Reef in the Spratly Islands.

Poling, who heads CSIS's Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative, said the images showed China had also deployed J-11 combat aircraft as part of its exercises.

"China is only building civilian and some necessary defense facilities on our own islands".

The exclusion of the Chinese navy from the RIMPAC is expected to coerce China into reversing the militarization in these areas; thereby giving them a chance to not violate all the peace promises made by President Xi Jinping.

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The Spratly Islands include some 100 islands, atolls and reefs in the southern South China Sea between Vietnam and the Philippines.

The Pentagon's decision may presage a harder line than the Trump administration has previously taken on the South China Sea dispute. -China military ties, despite tensions over Beijing's construction of man-made islands in the South China Sea, some of which have been militarized. He said at a joint press conference afterwards that the move was not constructive and was "unhelpful to the trust and cooperation between the Chinese and United States militaries". Only to say that we have expressed consistent concern about militarisation of the South China Sea.

The decision to withdraw China's invitation was made by Defense Secretary James Mattis in coordination with the White House, according to a USA official, after Beijing's recent deployment of missile systems and the first landing of a Chinese bomber on an island in the South China Sea. US officials have expressed concerns for years that China's militarization of the islands could threaten trade in the region and heighten tensions with the other nations who claim land in the area. In addition, it wants China to roll back policies that require the transfer of intellectual property to Chinese firms as a condition for access to the Chinese market.

USA military officials insist they are leaving little to chance, warning the bases are already helping China project military power into areas once dominated by its neighbours. Plans for this year's 26th RIMPAC were finalized last month with over 1,000 personnel from 27 nations set to participate, including debut appearances from Brazil, Israel, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. The deployment, if confirmed, could mark the first installation of Chinese missiles in the South China Sea.

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The Pentagon says it has disinvited China from a multinational military exercise to be held this summer in the Pacific. "China's behavior is inconsistent with the principles and purposes of the RIMPAC exercise", he added.

The U.S. had included China in the past two versions of the naval exercise known as Rim of the Pacific, or RimPac, in 2014 and 2016.

"China should never, ever have been invited to RIMPAC". It's unhelpful to mutual understanding between China and the US. As Mr. Davidson suggested, the United States would be unable to reverse that dominion short of a almost unthinkable war.

In May, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson said allowing China to take part in RIMPAC was "the sort of thing that brings us all together in sort of positive, constructive ways".

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