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unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 08:32 AM
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China snubs perplex Roughead, Keating

Crew members of aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk man the rails as the ship arrives at its home port in Yokosuka, Japan on Nov. 27. The Kitty Hawk and its battle group returned to Japan after being refused entry for a port call in Hong Kong, where the ships were to mark the Thanksgiving holidays.

China snubs perplex Roughead, Keating
By Robert Burns - The Associated Press
Posted : Tuesday Nov 27, 2007 17:13:54 EST

Two of the Navys top admirals said Tuesday that Chinas refusal to let a U.S. aircraft carrier make a Thanksgiving port call at Hong Kong was surprising and troubling.

This is perplexing. Its not helpful, Adm. Timothy Keating, commander of Pacific Command, told reporters in a videoteleconference from his headquarters at Camp Smith, Hawaii. He also called it distressing and irritating but later said it should not be viewed as calamitous.

Its not, in our view, conduct that is indicative of a country that understands its obligations as a responsible nation, he said, adding that he hopes it does not indicate a lasting blockage of port visits.

The carrier Kitty Hawk, which has its home port near Tokyo, was forced to return early to Japan when Chinese authorities at the last minute barred the warship and its escort vessels from entering Hong Kong harbor.

Keating said that by the time the Chinese acted, hundreds of family members of sailors aboard the Kitty Hawk had already flown to Hong Kong from their homes in Japan to join in the port visit.

Asked about seeking an explanation from the Chinese, Keating said he had heard nothing from Chinese military authorities and that it would be a matter for the State Department to pursue. He said he did not expect the Chinese to apologize.

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