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China Says U.S. Sending ‘Wrong Signal’ on South China Sea

China said U.S. criticism of its attempt to bolster claims to gas- and oil-rich islands in the South China Sea sent “a seriously wrong signal” to nations embroiled in territorial disputes in the region.

China’s recent actions “run counter to collaborative diplomatic efforts to resolve differences and risk further escalating tensions,” a State Department spokesman, Patrick Ventrell, said in an Aug. 3 statement.