Ten navies warships of the China and Russia staged an unprecedented scene of provocation to Japan and the US, their adversaries both locally and globally, this Monday (18), as they crossed without warning the strait that separates two of the main Japanese islands.
Also read: Russian and US ships engage in Asian incident
The episode, denounced on Tuesday, took place after a series of naval exercises that the two countries carry out together in the Sea of Japan, in international waters, every year. After the end of the activity, which involved dozens of vessels, five Chinese and five Russian destroyers strayed from the fleet.
The ten ships crossed the Tsugaru Strait to reach the Pacific Ocean. At just under 20 kilometers, the strait separates the islands of Honshu — the largest and most populous in Japan, home to the capital, Tokyo — and Hokkaido, to the north.
Yoshihiko Isozaki, a member of Japan’s new government, criticized the action in an interview with the NHK public network and said that Tokyo “watches closely” the activities of Chinese and Russians in the region.
The country’s new prime minister, Fumio Kishida, has been reiterating a tough Japanese stance against China and strengthening the alliance with the United States. Last month, US President Joe Biden strengthened the Quad group — an alliance formed by the US, Japan, India and Australia — in an attempt to curb Chinese growth in the region.