By Zhao Wei, Sina English
The Chinese navy kicks off a six-day live ammunition drill in the East China Sea starting Tuesday, which arouses close attentions of neighboring countries, and in particular, jitters Tokyo.
The South Korean media believed that the upcoming live-ammunition drill is a warning to Japan, an intensified message over its "buy" of the Diaoyu Islands. South Korea's Munhwa Ilbo published a report that summarizes China's strategies on maritime territorial disputes as something of "Allying with ASEAN, beating Japan".
According to Japan's Kyodo news agency, it is unclear about the scale and detail contents of the Chinese navy drill in the East China Sea. But it deduces that purpose of the drill seems to contain the U.S. and Philippines, who have just launched a joint naval exercise on July 2 in the South China Sea.
The People's Liberation Army issued an announcement on July 7 saying that the navy will conduct a six-day, live ammunition drill in the area east of its Zhujiajian-Yushan demarcation line in the East China Sea starting from July 10 to July 15. All vessels and ships are prohibited from entering its designated exercise area during the period.
This is not the first such drill in the East China Sea, according to Singapore's Lianhe Zaobao. In July 2010, the PLA launched a six-day, live-fire drill shortly before a joint drill between the United States and S Korea in the Yellow Sea, close to East China's Shandong Province.
The exercise area is a bit bigger than that of the drill in 2010, but it is not in the so-called disputed waters, and it is far away from both the Huangyan and Diaoyu islands.
Korea Joongang Daily published an analysis on July 9 with the title: "As Japan plans to 'nationalize' Diaoyu Islands, China to conduct live-ammunition drill", again indicating Chinese navy drill is delivering a warning to Japan.
The Chinese navy will soon launch a drill in waters near Zhoushan, East China's Zhejiang province, as part of its annual exercise plan, the Defense Ministry said on Monday.