According to reports in the UK, a Chinese vessel was detected patrolling Australia’s coast for 3 weeks in August and September, gathering electric intelligence as it passed important military stations.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has emphasized the security danger posed by Beijing, saying that claims that a Chinese surveillance ship circled Australia’s coast earlier this year underscore the “extremely difficult situation” in the Indo-Pacific area.
According to an Australian news website, this follows reports from the United Kingdom that the Chinese warship had been detected patrolling Australia’s coast for three weeks in August and September, collecting electronic intelligence as it passed important military sites.
According to a report initially published in The Daily Telegraph, the Chinese vessel was a Dongdiao-class ship capable of monitoring communications and radar signals. It’s identical to the one used to track military drills between Australia and the United States earlier this year.
“I think the importance of the presence of the Chinese Navy – which we were conscious of, and they were keeping an eye on us, and we were keeping an eye on them – the importance of that is to highlight to Australians that there is a very serious state in the Indo-Pacific,” Morrison said reporters in Adelaide on Friday.
“They have the right to be in their current location. We had a feeling they were around. International maritime law allows them to be there. But don’t believe for a minute that we weren’t keeping an eye on them in the same way that they were trying to keep an eye on us.”
According to Morrison, Australia must be able to stand on its own two feet, which needs tremendous strength. “Many have chastised me for taking such a strong stand on this topic,” he remarked.
According to the UK daily, the ship entered Australia’s 200-kilometre exclusive economic zone off the coast of Darwin in August before slowly sailing south and hugging the shoreline.
According to sources, the warship travelled as far south as Sydney before crossing the Tasman Sea to New Zealand, where it watched several critical military training grounds.
According to the Australian publication, China regularly sends spy ships to watch military drills near Australia, including in 2017 and 2019. However, the recent appearance was said to be odd because no exercises or war simulations were taking place.
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