WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States has raised concerns with China about its latest militarization of the South China Sea and there will be near-term and long-term consequences, the White House said on Thursday.
U.S. news network CNBC reported on Wednesday that China had installed anti-ship cruise missiles and surface-to-air missile systems on three outposts in the South China Sea. It cited sources with direct knowledge of U.S. intelligence.
Asked about the report, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told a regular news briefing: “We’re well aware of China’s militarization of the South China Sea. We’ve raised concerns directly with the Chinese about this and there will be near-term and long-term consequences.”
A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman responded by claiming its indisputable sovereignty over the Nansha Islands, and said it was only involved in "peaceful construction activities."