U.S. Navy challenges Russian territorial claims in the Sea of Japan

The Russian Defense Ministry stated that the American destroyer USS John S. McCain violated the Russian border in the Sea of Japan, Interfax reports.

According to the Russian military, the destroyer crossed two kilometers into the Russian territorial waters.

The Russian Defense Ministry claims that USS John S. McCain was forced out by the Russian large anti-submarine ship Admiral Vinogradov.

In turn, the command of the U.S. Seventh Fleet reported that USS John S. McCain conducted an operation to ensure freedom of navigation and did not violate internationally recognized borders.

"The Russian Federation's statement about this mission is false. USS John S. McCain was not "expelled" from any nation's territory. McCain conducted this FONOP in accordance with international law and continued to conduct normal operations in international waters. The operation reflects our commitment to uphold freedom of navigation and lawful uses of the sea as a principle, and the United States will never bow in intimidation or be coerced into accepting illegitimate maritime claims, such as those made by the Russian Federation," the statement reads.

The Seventh Fleet noted that  “By conducting this operation, the United States demonstrated that these waters are not Russia's territorial sea and that the United States does not acquiesce in Russia's claim that Peter the Great is a "historic bay" under international law."

Earlier, the Russian Defense Ministry said that Russian fighter jets intercepted three U.S. Air Force strategic bombers B-52N and escorted them over the Black Sea.

  USA, Russia