SINGAPORE — The US Navy’s vice chief of naval operations presented her views on regional maritime security issues today at the biennial International Maritime Defence Exhibition (IMDEX) held in Singapore.
Adm. Michelle Howard told a small media roundtable that, as an effective crisis management tool between China and the US, the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES) has been a success. It was used between the US Navy’s littoral combat ship Fort Worth and a Chinese warship in the South China Sea during a recent patrol, she added.
The Fort Worth and Type 54A Jiangkai II frigate, 569 Yulin, will be on view at Changi Naval Base at IMDEX as part of a 20-warship exhibition for the show.
“We had previously agreed with the Chinese, if we met at sea, to use CUES,” Howard said. “So Fort Worth came across one of our counterparts” and the encounters were handled in a professional manner.
Navy chiefs approved the use of CUES in April 2014 during the Western Pacific Naval Symposium in China .
The admiral said much of the South China Sea is disputed territory among China’s neighbors and there are unanswered questions about China’s massive land reclamation projects in the Spratly Islands.