China demands that the US cease backing the “provocations” in the Philippines.

BEIJING, June 28 (Reuters) – China urged the United States on Friday to stop tolerating and supporting “provocations” by the Philippines, after Deputy Secretary of State Kurt Campbell expressed concern about Beijing’s “destabilizing actions in the South China Sea”.

China and the Philippines have recently traded accusations over “dangerous and illegal maneuvers” affecting their respective vessels in the area around the Second Thomas Shoal, a disputed atoll in the busy waterway.

“The United States should stop condoning and supporting the Philippines’ provocations and nuisance and take practical actions to safeguard peace and stability in the South China Sea,” said Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Mao Ning.

The Philippines has sent missions to resupply soldiers living aboard a rusty, aging warship deliberately grounded by Manila in 1999 at the atoll to reinforce its sovereignty claims.

At a regular briefing, Mao added that the Philippines had turned its back on a consensus with China, challenging its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and insisting on delivering construction materials to the warship.

On June 17, a Philippine sailor was injured after what the Southeast Asian nation’s military called “intentional-high speed ramming” by the Chinese Coast Guard, an assertion China has disputed, saying the actions were lawful.