China holds naval drills in Sea of Japan amid mounting tensions

Japanese media reports that Beijing has built a dock for its warships at a site, which Japan is developing as a military base.

The Chinese navy carried out drills in the Sea of Japan as a part of their routine exercises in accordance with international law and practice, the Chinese military's official newspaper said on Friday.

The news comes after the Japanese media reported on Friday that Beijing has built a dock for its warships at a site, which Japan is developing as a military base. The controversial land lies to the west of the disputed Senkaku or Diaoyu islands.

Japan's Jiji Press cited unnamed government sources and reported that the island country will request a record defence Budget next year.

China's navy has been increasingly organizing military drills in the conflicted waters as it seeks to sharpen its operational abilities.

Five Chinese ships carried out drills in international waters in the Bering Sea off Alaska last year.

The People's Liberation Army Daily did not exactly say where the latest drills took place and described it as a "certain part of the Sea of Japan".

Drill commander Xu Haihua said the drills were a part of their routine annual arrangements and are aimed to improve the fleet's ability to fight far out at sea.

"Exercises far out at sea in international waters are commonly done by navies of the world, and this year, our navy has many times organised fleets to carry out exercises far out in the Western Pacific," People's Liberation Army Daily said.

"This deep-sea exercise is part of annual training arrangements, is not aimed at any specific country, region or target, and accords with international law and practice," the newspaper added.

The Sea of Japan is a strategic waterway which is bordered by countries like Japan, Russia, South Korea and North Korea.

Recently, the conflict between Japan and China has been rising due to "China's incursions into the waters of the Tokyo-controlled disputed islands".

Apart from this, both the nations are also having disputes regarding the South China Sea territorial claims.