Beijing is set to make an 'urgent' announcement on Sunday afternoon in the wake of US-South Korea military drills in the Yellow Sea. The Chinese government had earlier warned both countries that the military activity in the region could escalate tensions.
The foreign ministry has called for a media conference for both domestic and foreign press. However, the ministry has made it clear that it will not be taking any questions.
We hold a consistent and clear-cut stance on the issue. We oppose any party to take any military actions in our exclusive economic zone without permission, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hong Lei said in a statement on Saturday
South Korea and US forces began joint military exercises in waters west of the Korean Peninsula on Sunday morning. The exercise is seen a 'show of force' by the alliance after the last Tuesday's attack by North Korea on Yeonpyeong Island. The artillery shelling by the North killed two soldiers and two civilians of the South.
Nuclear-powered aircraft carrier-USS George Washington, three destroyers, a naval patrol ship and an antisubmarine warfare aircraft, have joined the four-day exercises amid threats of a merciless military counterattack by the communist North. South Korea's Defense Ministry also sent out text messages to media personnel asking them to leave Yeonpyeong Island immediately, the Reuters reported.
If the US brings its carrier to the West Sea of Korea at last, no one can predict the ensuing consequences, a report in North Korea's official KCNA news agency said on Saturday.
US claimed that the drills were planned 'well before' and meant to showcase their commitment to regional stability through deterrence. Officials maintained that the military exercise was in no way aimed at China. But, Beijing raised severe objections and stated that it would not be responsible for what North Korea might do in retaliation.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi also discussed the issue on Saturday and called for 'creation of conditions to ease the tension in relations between the two Koreas.'