|The Foreign Ministry Issues Statement on the US Claim of Downing a Chinese Unmanned Airship|
China strongly disapproves of and protests against the US attack on a civilian unmanned airship by force. The Chinese side has, after verification, repeatedly informed the US side of the civilian nature of the airship and conveyed that its entry into the US due to force majeure was totally unexpected. The Chinese side has clearly asked the US side to properly handle the matter in a calm, professional and restrained manner. The spokesperson of the US Department of Defense also noted that the balloon does not present a military or physical threat to people on the ground. Under such circumstances, the US use of force is a clear overreaction and a serious violation of international practice. China will resolutely safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of the company concerned, and reserves the right to make further responses if necessary.