Top U.S. Navy Officer to Visit China After Recent Tensions

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S.’s Chief of Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson will visit China from tomorrow for three days to meet with senior Chinese military leaders, the U.S. Navy said in a statement.

He is scheduled to meet China’s Central Military Commission leadership and People’s Liberation Army (Navy) Commander Vice Admiral Shen Jinlong, according to the statement.

“A routine exchange of views is essential, especially in times of friction, in order to reduce risk and avoid miscalculation," said Richardson in the statement. "Honest and frank dialogue can improve the relationship in constructive ways, help explore areas where we share common interests, and reduce risk while we work through our differences."

Earlier this week, China urged the U.S. to halt what it described as “provocative actions” after a U.S. guided-missile destroyer conducted a so-called freedom-of-navigation patrol near the disputed but Chinese-held Paracel Islands in the South China Sea.

The patrol was meant to challenge excessive maritime claims by Beijing and to “preserve access to the waterways as governed by international law,” according to a statement from the U.S. Pacific Fleet.

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