- The incident occurred three months after Australia accused China of shining a military-grade laser at one of Canberra's defence planes over waters north of Australia
- According to Zhao, China's military has always operated in a "safe, standard, and professional manner" in accordance with international law.
After Canberra accused a Chinese fighter jet of dangerously intercepting one of its spy planes over the South China Sea, Beijing urged Australia to “act sensibly” or suffer “severe consequences.”
Despite a 2016 Hague judgement dismissing its claims, Australia has stated that it is not unusual for it to conduct surveillance flights in the South China Sea, a territory Beijing maintains falls within its jurisdiction.
The United States and its allies, who demand freedom of navigation in the area, are enraged by China’s stance.
A Chinese J-16 fighter intercepted a P-8 surveillance plane late last month, according to Australian Defence Minister Richard Marles, in a “dangerous” manoeuvre that jeopardised the safety of the Australian Defence Force crew.
Beijing, on the other hand, said on Monday that it would “never allow any country to encroach on China’s sovereignty and security under the guise of freedom of navigation.”
“China once again urges Australia to sincerely respect China’s national security interests and fundamental interests, behave and talk prudently to prevent a miscalculation that has significant implications,” said Zhao Lijian, a spokeswoman for the foreign ministry.
The incident occurred three months after Australia accused China of shining a military-grade laser at one of Canberra’s defence planes over waters north of Australia, which the previous administration described as a “act of intimidation.”
According to Zhao, China’s military has always operated in a “safe, standard, and professional manner” in accordance with international law.
Last week, Canada accused Chinese pilots of nearly colliding in mid-air during previous contacts in international airspace while participating in UN sanctions enforcement efforts against North Korea.
In reaction to “provocative behaviour” by the Canadian military, China’s defence ministry said Monday that its pilots used “appropriate, forceful, safe, and professional actions.”