Published: Sat, December 08, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

U.S. destroyer challenges Russian claims in Sea of Japan

U.S. destroyer challenges Russian claims in Sea of Japan

"This applies to both the sea of Japan and to other places around the world", said Makmur.

The US Navy calls such stunts "Freedom of Navigation Operations" (FONOP).

Throughout the sailing, the USA warship was escorted and moved under the control of the large anti-submarine ship Admiral Tributs and several warplanes of Russia's Pacific Fleet's naval aviation that were in close proximity, the Russian Ministry of Defence says further.

Recall that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation has promised to send Russian Federation a clear call not to use the annexation of Crimea and illegally built Kerch bridge for non-admission of ships of Ukrainian Navy to the sea of Azov. Peter the Great Bay is the largest gulf in the Sea of Japan, also referred to as the East Sea by the Koreas, and home to the Russian's far-east city of Vladivostok and the Russian Navy's Pacific Fleet. The presence of a USA destroyer in the area is comparable to a Russian sail-by of San Diego, California or Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

A U.S. Navy official told CNN that the U.S. does not recognize Russia's claims on the waters, saying that Moscow lays claim to areas that far exceed the 12 miles from the Russian coastline that is guaranteed by global law.

Wednesday's operation came amid reports that the United States was considering moving a Navy warship into the Black Sea in connection with last week's incident in the Kerch Strait. While Russia has ratified the convention, the U.S. has not.

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This week, the Kremlin's defense ministry reportedly acknowledged that Russian Federation is holding naval war exercises and surface-to-air missile drills in the Black Sea region.

The Kremlin claims ownership of the entire Peter the Great Bay region, named after the first emperor of Russian Federation.

Under the rules of the Montreux Convention, US ships can only be in the Black Sea for 21 days. This was the first FONOP in that part of the Sea of Japan since 1987, Pentagon officials said. The US last had a ship in the area back in October.

Tensions between Moscow and Washington are on the rise in the wake of apparent Russian aggression in the Sea of Azov, where Russian vessels rammed and fired on Ukrainian vessels before capturing the ships and their crews, and USA plans to withdraw from the Cold War Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, a response to Russian violations.

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