Australia ‘concerned’ by China’s ‘unsafe’ sonar use injuring its divers

Australia has expressed sturdy considerations about its divers in worldwide waters getting injured from sonar pulses from a Chinese destroyer.

A Navy destroyer of the People’s Liberation Army ignored requests to hold clear of the divers, Australian defence minister Richard Marles mentioned in a press release on Saturday,

“The Australian Government has expressed its serious concerns to the Chinese Government following an unsafe and unprofessional interaction with a People’s Liberation Army-Navy destroyer,” the defence minister mentioned.

The divers have been reportedly liberating nets entangled across the propellers of the Australian Navy’s HMAS Toowoomba which was conducting operations within the worldwide waters within Japan’s unique financial zone.

The Australian Navy frigate reportedly communicated its intention to conduct diving operations utilizing internationally recognised indicators.

But a Chinese ship approached the Australian frigate and emitted harmful sonar pulses, Mr Marles mentioned.

“Medical assessments conducted after the divers exited the water identified they had sustained minor injuries likely due to being subjected to the sonar pulses from the Chinese destroyer,” he mentioned.

“The safety and wellbeing of our Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel is our utmost priority. Australia expects all countries, including China, to operate their militaries in a professional and safe manner,” the minister added.

Australia’s accusations come as a number of nations have raised considerations about China’s rising assertiveness within the seas.

Last month, a Chinese vessel got here dangerously shut – practically 4 metres – to a Philippine patrol ship within the South China Sea, sparking fears of a territorial dispute.

A US Navy surveillance aircraft additionally stored a detailed watch earlier this month as dozens of Chinese coast guard and accompanying ships chased and encircled Philippine vessels in what’s beeing veiwed as one of the harmful flashpoints within the South China Sea.

The US and its allies have deployed navy ships and fighter plane to advertise freedom of navigation and to reassure allies just like the Philippines.

“Defence has for decades undertaken maritime surveillance activities in the region and does so in accordance with international law, exercising the right to freedom of navigation and overflight in international waters and airspace,” Mr Marles mentioned.