On Nov. 23, China’s government announced the establishment of an East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) in the East China Sea. The ADIZ encompasses several islands claimed by China, Japan, and Taiwan, and has caused a flare in already high tensions in the region. China’s ADIZ overlaps similar zones already established by Japan and South Korea. According to a People’s Liberation Army spokesperson, jets were scrambled on Nov. 29 in order to verify and identify U.S. and Japanese aircraft that had entered the ADIZ. The U.S. aircraft consisted of two unarmed B-52 bombers in what the Pentagon insisted was routine transit through the zone. As of yet no details have been given as to what measures China would take against intruding aircraft; however, a spokesperson from the Chinese Defense Ministry did state that it would be “incorrect” to assume that unidentified aircraft would simply be shot down. Among the islands encompassed by the ADIZ are the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, territory that has recently been the subject of increasing tensions between China and Japan. A statement made by the Japanese foreign ministry called the established airspace “unacceptable.” U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden arrived in China on a planned visit on Dec. 4, shortly after visiting Japan, where he has urged China to show restraint and refrain from increasing tensions. (Washington Post, Nov. 23; BBC, Reuters, Nov. 29; Global Times, Nov. 30; New York Times, Dec. 4 2013)
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SR: The Week’s China Reads
Every week, China Program’s Senior Advisor Dr. Robert A. Kapp compiles a reading list and provides commentary, for you to better understand China.
Robert A. Kapp is senior advisor to the China Program at the Carter Center. He has been principal of Robert A. Kapp and Associates, a business consulting firm, since 2004. From 1994 through 2004 he served as President of the United States-China Business Council…