A leading Chinese newspaper has criticized Britain’s decision to sail one of its warships through the disputed South China Sea next month.
Media reports said on Wednesday that British Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson had said in remarks published a day earlier during a visit to Australia that the UK was to send a warship through the South China Sea to assert Britain’s purported right to freedom of navigation.
Chinese newspaper The Global Times reacted on Wednesday, saying Britain was trying to grab attention by sending the military ship to the South China Sea, where territory is disputed between China and smaller neighbors, including Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
The widely read state-run tabloid demanded that British officials state clearly the objective of the mission.
“If not provocation, the Royal Navy should behave modestly when passing through the South China Sea,” it said in editorials…