Donald Trump slams Chinese seizure of US drone as ‘unpresidented act’

Donald Trump has hit out at the Chinese seizure of a US underwater drone in international waters as an “unpresidented (sic) act”. The US said the drone was collecting scientific data in the disputed South China Sea, and was one of two being recovered by a survey ship, when it was taken by a Chinese warship. Mr Trump responded to the move on Twitter on Saturday, misspelling the word “unprecedented” as he conveyed his outrage. Two hours later he tweeted the same response - this time correcting his spelling error - and deleted his initial tweet.

China steals United States Navy research drone in international waters - rips it out of water and takes it to China in unpresidented act.

Donald Trump

Within a couple of hours of his original tweet, China accused the US of “hyping up” the incident and said it was not conducive to a “smooth” resolution of the dispute. China’s defence ministry said it had been in touch with the US about returning the drone. Beijing will remain on alert to US surveillance and take the necessary steps, it added. The US has demanded Beijing returns the 10ft-long unmanned glider and has issued a formal complaint. It comes amid escalating tensions between China and the US after the President-elect suggested he is willing to abandon the One China policy which guides Washington’s position on Taiwan. Mr Trump caused outrage in Beijing after he took a call from Tsai Ing-wen, the president of democratically self-ruling Taiwan.