BEIJING, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- China's Ministry of National Defense has told the United States not to "cause trouble out of nothing," and to respect the sovereignty of China.
Wu Qian, spokesperson for the ministry, made the remarks Saturday in response to the actions of a U.S. warship Wednesday.
According to Wu, on Jan. 17, the USS Hopper, a guided missile destroyer, arbitrarily entered waters surrounding Huangyan Island in the South China Sea, before Chinese missile destroyer Huangshan immediately conducted an identification and warning process to drive it away.
Under joint efforts by China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the situation around the South China Sea is becoming more and more stable and positive, Wu said.
The United States has sent vessels to illegally enter the waters around China's islands and reefs in the South China Sea on multiple occasions, endangering the safety of vessels and personnel from both sides, the spokesperson continued.
It has also threatened China's sovereignty and security, harmed the regional peace and stability, and gone against the stable development of relations between the two countries and their militaries, he stated.
"We hope that the United States will respect China's sovereignty, respect the efforts made by the countries within the region, and not cause trouble out of nothing or make waves," Wu said.
The Chinese military will continue to fulfill its defensive duties, intensify its patrols in the air and at sea, in order to firmly safeguard the sovereignty and security of the country, as well as the regional peace and stability, he added.