US warships might make a pass by China’s man-made islets


WASHINGTON — The U.S. government is considering whether to send military ships and planes close to China’s man-made islands in the South China Sea. The government is leaning that way in the wake of Chinese navy vessels’ recent passage through U.S. territorial waters off Alaska.

Washington is also considering possible sanctions against China in response to Chinese cyberattacks on the U.S.

The developments are ratcheting up tension between Washington and Beijing ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s planned U.S. visit later this month.

The U.S. Defense Department said Friday that five Chinese navy vessels that had been confirmed operating in the Bering Sea breached U.S. territorial waters when they passed near the Aleutian Islands.

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