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US, China tensions escalate over South China Sea conflict

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For story suggestions or custom animation requests, contact tips@nextanimation.com.tw. Visit http://archive.nextanimationstudio.com to view News Direct's complete archive of 3D news animations. RESTRICTIONS: Broadcast: NO USE JAPAN, NO USE TAIWAN Digital: NO USE JAPAN, NO USE TAIWAN A dangerously close encounter in disputed waters has become the latest flashpoint in worsening Sino-American relations. The South China Morning Post reports that on September 30, the USS Decatur was sailing near China-claimed Gaven Reef in the South China Sea’s Spratly Islands when it was approached by a Chinese ship. The PRC destroyer Luyang reportedly came within 45 yards of the American vessel’s bow, prompting it to maneuver to prevent a collision. The South China Sea has long been a site of conflict, not just for the U.S. and China, but for many countries in the region, whose overlapping claims on disputed waters are based on their Exclusive Economic Zones. In contrast, China purports to own 90% of the South China Sea based on historic rights, using a nebulous “9-dash line” to back its territorial claim. Though the U.S. has no stake in the disputed waters, it has repeatedly challenged China’s maritime claims through freedom of navigation operations, resulting in several altercations over the years. American and Japanese ships held joint military exercises in the contested region as recently as September. Weeks later, U.S. bombers flew through the area twice in three days. Following the USS Decatur incident, a U.S. Navy proposal suggests a large military exercise in the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait as a global show of force to warn China, reports CNN. ----------------------------------------­­---------------------------------------­-­---------------- Next Animation Studio’s News Direct service provides daily, high-quality, informative 3D news animations that fill in for missing footage and help viewers understand breaking news stories or in-depth features on science, technology, and health. Sign up for a free trial of News Direct's news animations at http://newsdirect.nextanimationstudio.com/trial/ To subscribe to News Direct or for more info, please visit: http://newsdirect.nextanimationstudio.com
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