China protests US downing balloon over Atlantic Ocean

China protests US downing balloon over Atlantic Ocean

Baku, February 5, AZERTAC

China's foreign ministry expressed “strong dissatisfaction" at the US for shooting down of its balloons over the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday, according to Anadolu Agency.

"China expresses its strong dissatisfaction and protest against the US's use of force to attack civilian unmanned aircraft. The Chinese side has repeatedly informed the US side after verification that the airship is for civilian use and entered the US due to force majeure – it was completely an accident," it said in a statement.

"China will resolutely safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of relevant companies, while reserving the right to make further necessary reaction."

The US shot down the suspected Chinese “spy” balloon Saturday which had been spotted above US airspace off the coast of the state of South Carolina.

An operation is underway to recover debris in the Atlantic Ocean.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the decision was made at the direction of US President Biden.

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