UK-China relationship at risk over maritime incursion, warns Beijing


China’s government said its future relationship with Britain could be at risk after an August incident when a Royal Navy warship sailed close to islands in the South China Sea that Beijing claims as its own. China called it a “provocation.”

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“Britain’s actions were wrong,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying.

“They clearly violated the consensus and spirit put forward by Britain’s leadership that they wished to build a golden era in ties with China. This certainly will unfavorably influence the further development of the China-Britain relationship.”

Hua added: “We hope that Britain can recognize the severity of the issue and take actions to rectify the situation”.

In an editorial, the official China Daily newspaper warned that Britain’s actions could “put a spanner in the works” in any future free trade deal between both countries after the UK exits the European Union, which is scheduled for March 29 2019.

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