China flies 2 commercial jets to man-made island in South China Sea

Vietnam, a fellow claimant protested against the move.

By: AP | Beijing | Published: January 7, 2016 1:35 pm
South China sea, man made islands, protest by Vietnam, China, US, Vietnam, China news Disputed water regions in South China Sea (Source: Reuters)

China says a pair of civilian jet airliners landed at one of its newly created islands in a disputed section of the South China Sea in test flights to see whether its airstrip was up to standard.

Wednesday’s test flights followed one over the weekend that marked the first trip to Fiery Cross Reef, which brought a protest from fellow claimant Vietnam.

China’s creation of seven new islands by piling sand on reefs and atolls has been condemned by its neighbors and the United States, who say China is raising tensions in an area where six governments share overlapping maritime territorial claims.

The US State Department responded to Saturday’s flight by reiterating calls for a halt to land reclamation and militarization of outposts in those waters

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