Southern air defence zone ‘crucial for China in long term’, PLA expert says


Establishing a second air defence zone – this time over the South China Sea – was in China’s long-term interest, a senior People’s Liberation Army researcher said yesterday.

Senior colonel Li Jie , of the PLA Navy’s Military Academy, said a senior US intelligence officer’s remarks last week about China’s intention to declare another air defence identification zone (ADIZ) were meant to deter China from making such a move.

Captain James Fanell, director of intelligence and information operations at the US Pacific Fleet, predicted China would set up such a zone over the South China Sea by the end of 2015.

China declared its first air defence zone late last year over the East China Sea, where it is locked in a territorial dispute with Japan over the Diaoyu Islands, known as the Senkakus by the Japanese.

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