The video from The Next News Network is taken from Sputnik News, which reports that China is upgrading its weaponry. The upgraded combat features on board the flagship of the South China Sea fleet have impressed Western defense analysts, as Beijing threatens to aggressively defend disputed territories.
The anchor reporter, Gary Franchi, says they had recently reported that Vietnam has moved missile launchers into the highly contested Spratly Island chain. Now, Beijing has installed supersonic missiles on their deadliest destroyer in the South China Sea. According to news reports, the new weapons on China’s flagship Shenzhen Destroyer indicate that China is indeed ready to escalate its show of power.
The missile system on the Shenzhen has reportedly been upgraded to a 32-cell vertical launch platform, capable of firing medium-range surface-to-air missiles with a range of 19 nautical miles and a speed of 2,148 miles per hour.
Defense analysts say the system is comparable to the powerful Russian Golem 2 missile system. The Shenzhen is already China’s most lethal destroyer, so these upgrades come as Beijing faces increasing pressure to relax its claims over the oil-rich South China Sea territories through which some 40% of the world’s commercial ships travel every day.
A quick recap of what’s going on: the Spratly Island chain was militarized by China, but was contested in the Hague by the Philippines, which decided in favor of the Philippines. China decided to ignore the ruling, and the Philippines entered into a deal with the United States to re-establish military bases that had been abandoned.
On the Vietnam side, missiles are getting ready to defend their region, while the Japanese have announced a strengthened naval power on their end, which would put Chinese ships in the crosshairs. The US carrier strike groups have been constantly patrolling the region, and the South Koreans are launching their own massive military exercises, too.
China is developing an underwater military base, if reports are to be believed, and the country has been conducting military exercises with Russia, as well. Franchi says mainstream media is not reporting on this hotbed of action, so he suggests that viewers keep watching to stay updated on the latest news from the region.