South China Sea
Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy in South China SeaReuters

Even as India-China tensions across the LAC in Galwan Vally are starting to ease, US and China rivalry continues. A recent statement made by the People's Liberation Army was met with a reality check that defunct the bold claim made by the Chinese.

A Global Times report last week claimed that analysts believe the "South China Sea is fully within the grasp of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), and any US aircraft carrier movement in the region is solely at the pleasure of the PLA, which has a wide selection of anti-aircraft carrier weapons like the DF-21D and DF-26 "aircraft carrier killer" missiles." But the bold claim was shot down by a tweet sent by the US Navy.

"And yet, there they are. Two US Navy aircraft carriers operating in the international waters of the South China Sea," the US Navy Chief of Information tweeted in response to the Global Times, which runs Chinese propaganda and labeled unreliable source for news.

US China
[Representational image]Creative Commons

China shoots down its own claim

In the same report where it claims it dominates the South China Sea, the Global Times has cited some military officials acknowledging the US military's presence in the seas.

"The US has been frequently sending warships and warplanes to the South China Sea, even entering other countries' territorial waters and violating their sovereignty in the name of "freedom of navigation" operations. The US is the real source behind South China Sea's militarization, and it is in no position to criticize China for its rightful actions," Zhang Junshe, a senior research fellow at the PLA Naval Military Studies Research Institute, was quoted as saying by China's state-run paper.

According to a CNN report last week, USS Ronald Reagan and USS Nimitz aircraft carriers are holding large-scale exercises in the South China Sea together with four other warships.