China 'likely training for US targets'

Pentagon: China building bombers, training pilots for missions against U.S.

Pentagon notes Chinese naval global expansion and regional control

"In the last three years, the PLA (people's liberation army of China) has expanded its zone of the flooded operations, having the experience in important marine regions and, probably, conducting training for attacks on targets the U.S. and its allies", the report said.

The report said that over the last three years, China's People's Liberation Army ( PLA) has rapidly expanded its overwater bomber operating areas.

On the military front, 's attempted expansion into the South China Sea and elsewhere in the Pacific has kept USA officials on edge, and led to a degradation of the bilateral relationship.

Pentagon: China building bombers, training pilots for missions against U.S.
China is 'likely training for strikes' against the US, new Pentagon report says

Beijing claims more than 80 per cent of the South China Sea, which carries around US$3.4 trillion worth of global trade each year.

Chinese bombers are increasingly active and flying farther from China's shores, according to a Department of Defense report released Thursday.

In its report, the Pentagon did not determine why the PLA was conducting bomber training drills in the region "beyond a demonstration of improved capabilities".

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The United States released a new Defense Strategy at the beginning of 2018 where it proclaimed "long-term strategic competitions with China" as one of the USA military's top challenges.

The Pentagon report said that despite a projected slowdown in economic growth, China's official defense budget would be more than $240 billion by 2028. "The United States opposes any unilateral actions that seek to undermine Japan's administration of the islands".

However, since then there have been several tests from both sides over the sovereignty of islands in the South China Sea, including USA warships conducting freedom of navigation movements around the disputed territory.

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Chinese authorities didn't immediately comment on the document, which was published as the US and China prepare to resume stalled talks after the two nations imposed steep tariffs on each others' exports.

Hundreds of military vehicles carrying advanced weaponry including drones, early warning radar, howitzers and air defence missiles participated in the PLA manoeuvre, state-run China Central Television (CCTV) reported on August 11.

It is estimated China spent more than $190bn (£149bn) on defence previous year, with the Pentagon predicting a rise to $240bn (188bn) by 2028. Starting with the U.S., which objects to its growing trade deficit with China, both sides have announced tariffs on a range of each others' goods.

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It did not, however, elaborate on Washington's assessment of how Beijing would deal with the North's leader in the event of a contingency.

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