warning from warning Washington after news Beijing has deployed missiles in the South China Sea. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said America was ready to take action.>> We're well aware of China's militarization of the South China Sea. We've raised concerns directly with the Chinese about this.
And there will be near term and long term consequences.>> The report came from US network CNBC. If it's true, it would be China's first missile deployment to the disputed Spratly Islands. Reuters Jerry Doyle has been following the story. Well the primary concern is that China has deployed two new types of missiles to three different islands in the Spratlys.
Now one type is a YJ-12B which is an anti ship cruise missile with a range of about 550 kilometers. It is, as the name suggests, designed to destroy enemy warships at some distance. The other missile is the HQ-9B, which is an anti aircraft or air defense missile with a range of about 300 kilometers and it also comes with those associated radars, which allow these island outposts to see incoming aircraft, see incoming missiles at some distance.
>> China has been building up it's military presence in the South China Sea for years. In spite of protests from other Asian countries who also have claims in the region. Beijing says it has quote irrefutable sovereignty over the Spratly islands and it's actions are purely in the interest of national security.
But one US expert called the missile deployment a major escalation and said Beijing wasn't likely to stop there. Meanwhile another dispute between China and the US is brewing in Djibouti on the horn of Africa. The pentagon accuses Chinese nationals of pointing lasers at American military aircraft. One US official telling Reuters that two pilots have actually suffered eye injuries as a result.
The source said that some of the assaults used military grade lasers and came from a Chinese base just miles from the US base. The pentagon is demanding that Beijing investigate.