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China says US flew high-altitude balloons over its airspace

China said on Monday that U.S. high-altitude balloons had flown unlicensed over Chinese airspace more than 10 times since early 2022, sparking a diplomatic confrontation after U.S. forces shot down what it claimed was a Chinese reconnaissance balloon. spread out.

“Since last year, more than 10 U.S. high-altitude balloons have illegally flown into Chinese airspace without the approval of relevant Chinese departments,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a regular press conference in Beijing. rice field.

Wang did not specifically state that the balloons were for military or spy purposes, nor did he provide any further details.

Asked how China responded to such intrusions into its airspace, Wang said the response was “responsible and professional.”


A suspected Chinese spy balloon drifts into the ocean after being shot down off the coast of Surfside Beach, South Carolina, on February 4, 2023.
Reuters

The Pentagon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

China’s claims came after the US shot down what it said was a Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina on February 4, after drifting for days on the US mainland.

In response to China’s ballooning, the United States has postponed a visit to Beijing by Secretary of State Anthony Brinken.


U.S. Navy sailors assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group 2 retrieve a high-altitude surveillance balloon February 5, 2023, off Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
U.S. Navy sailors assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group 2 retrieve a high-altitude surveillance balloon February 5, 2023, off Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
APs

Wang Wenbin, spokesman for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
China’s foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said the United States is flying balloons in Chinese airspace.
VCG by Getty Images

China says the balloon was a civilian research vessel that accidentally went off course and accused the US of overreacting.

“The first thing the US side should do is look at itself and change its ways, without slandering or inciting conflict,” Wang said.

Recently, the US military shot down three other flying objects over North America.

Mr Wang said he had no information about the latest three objects shot down by the US.

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