US to grill China over new passport maps 'including South China Sea, Arunachal'
The United States will raise concerns with China over a new map in its passports that lays claim to disputed areas in the South China Sea, says a report.
"We do have concerns about this map which is causing tension and anxiety between and among the states in the South China Sea," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told a news briefing.
"We do intend to raise this with the Chinese in terms of it not being helpful to the environment we all seek to resolve these issues," she added.
According to the Herald Sun, China's latest move irked some of its Southeast Asian neighbours, including India.
China had depicted Arunachal Pradesh and Aksai Chin as part of its territory in its new passports.
It also angered Vietnam and the Philippines by including disputed South China Sea islands on its maps.
The Philippines 'strongly protests' against China's move, its foreign affairs ministry spokesman, Raul Hernandez, had said last week.
"The action of China is contrary to the spirit of the declaration of conduct of parties in the South China Sea," Hernandez had said.
Vietnam's government lodged a formal complaint with the Chinese embassy in Hanoi last week.