• Kyodo

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China strongly warned a high-level Japanese official around late June that Tokyo should not send Self-Defense Forces to join U.S. operations that test the freedom of navigation in the disputed South China Sea, diplomatic sources said Saturday.

Japan will “cross a red line” if SDF vessels take part in so-called freedom of navigation operations, Ambassador Cheng Yonghua told the official, the sources said. Cheng even hinted at military action.

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