Royal Navy ship shadows Chinese destroyer in English Channel

U.S. & World

In this Aug. 2, 2019 photo provided by the Royal Navy, a view of the HMS Westminster which has shadowed a Chinese warship through the English Channel. Portsmouth-based HMS Westminster met up with the guided-missile destroyer Xian as it entered the Dover Straits on Saturday and shadowed her as she sailed through the channel’s busy merchant shipping. The frigate’s commanding officer, Will Paston, says the “Xian conducted herself in a safe and professional manner throughout.” (LPhot Alex Ceolin/Royal Navy/Crown Copyright via AP)

LONDON (AP) — Britain’s Royal Navy says one of its ships shadowed a Chinese destroyer as it sailed through the English Channel.

A navy statement said the HMS Westminster met up with the guided-missile destroyer Xian as it entered Dover Strait on Saturday.

The Xian was returning from Russia’s annual Navy Days in St. Petersburg. The U.K. navy says another frigate accompanied the Chinese ship up the channel three weeks ago on its way to the event.

The Westminster’s commanding officer, Will Paston, says the Royal Navy “routinely monitors other country’s warships through territorial waters” and the “Xian conducted herself in a safe and professional manner throughout.”

The Westminster has been attached to a NATO task group since March and training for anti-submarine warfare off the west coast of Norway.

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