Tags: china | missiles | removed | south china | sea

Report: China Has Removed or Hidden Missiles on Disputed Island

Report: China Has Removed or Hidden Missiles on Disputed Island
This aerial photo taken on Jan. 2, 2017 shows a Chinese navy formation, including the aircraft carrier Liaoning (C), during military drills in the South China Sea. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 07 June 2018 11:56 AM

Satellite images show that China has either moved, removed or hidden missiles from a disputed island in the South China Sea, the South China Morning Post is reporting.

Whatever the scenario, satellite imagery from June 3 reveals the absence of the missile systems and the HQ-9 missiles on Woody Island in the Paracel Islands, the Post reported.

The report comes a day after China took exception to the U.S. flying two B-52 bombers over the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea.

Beijing-based naval expert Li Jie told the Post that if China did remove the weapon systems, it's probably only temporary and precautionary.

"Because of the humid weather, plus a recent typhoon in the region, it is likely that those systems needed to be temporarily removed for repair or to have some of the parts replaced," Li told the Post.

U.S. defense officials tell CNN the better bet is that China moved the missile systems to conceal them inside buildings on the island.

Regardless, every expert agrees that wherever the systems are and whatever it is the Chinese are doing with them, they'll eventually make their way back in position.

Redeployment "would happen much faster if it’s just to change some small parts," Li told the Post. "But if the whole system needs to be replaced, then it would take much longer because it needed to be shipped back to places like Hainan for replacement."

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Satellite images show that China has either moved, removed or hidden missiles from a disputed island in the South China Sea.
china, missiles, removed, south china, sea
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2018-56-07
Thursday, 07 June 2018 11:56 AM
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