South Korea has declared an expanded air defense zone that partially overlaps one recently announced by China.
South Korea's Defense Ministry said on Sunday that the new zone, which will take effect on December 15, will include Ieodo, a submerged reef in waters off the south coast, which China calls Suyan.
The U.S. State Department said Sunday that the South Korean government had conferred with the United States in advance of Seoul's decision, including in a meeting Friday between U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and President Park Geun-hye in Seoul.
A statement said Washington has been and will remain in close consultation with allies and partners in the region to ensure their actions contribute to greater stability, predictability, and consistency with international practices.
South Korea's announcement came in response to China's November 23 decision to create a new air zone that overlaps territory claimed by South Korea and Japan in the East China Sea. China said all aircraft intending to enter the zone must first submit a flight plan, with Chinese officials reserving the right to deny access.
Vice President Biden said in a speech Friday at a university in Seoul that the United States does not recognize China's air defense zone.
In Beijing Thursday, Biden said China's new defense zone has created "significant apprehension" in the region.
The U.S., Japan and South Korea have sent military planes into the zone in recent days, defying China's demand they notify Beijing beforehand. China has not interfered with the flights, but has scrambled fighter jets to the area, heightening concerns about a possible miscalculation in the air.
Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.