An American U-2 reconnaissance aircraft “severely disrupted regular Chinese training activities” on Tuesday by intruding into airspace over an area where the People’s Liberation Army’s Northern Theater Command was carrying out the exercises, a spokesman for China’s Defense Ministry said.
The overflight was a blatant act of provocation that could have easily caused misunderstandings, misjudgments or even an accident, the spokesman, Senior Col. Wu Qian, said in the statement. He accused the U.S. of contravening bilateral guidelines on aerial and maritime safety, as well as relevant international norms.
“China is firmly opposed to this and has made solemn representations to the U.S.,” Col. Wu said. He didn’t provide further details about the U-2’s flight path or the location of the Chinese live-fire drills.
The U.S. Defense Department didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about the Chinese allegation.