comscore Hawaii-based patrol spots Chinese, Russian naval ships off Alaska island
Top News

Hawaii-based patrol spots Chinese, Russian naval ships off Alaska island

Honolulu Star-Advertiser logo
Unlimited access to premium stories for as low as $12.95 /mo.
Get It Now
  • U.S. COAST GUARD DISTRICT 17 VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                A Coast Guard Cutter Kimball crew-member observes a foreign vessel in the Bering Sea, Sept. 19. The U.S. Coast Guard cutter on routine patrol in the Bering Sea came across the guided missile cruiser from the People’s Republic of China, officials said Monday.

    U.S. COAST GUARD DISTRICT 17 VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS

    A Coast Guard Cutter Kimball crew-member observes a foreign vessel in the Bering Sea, Sept. 19. The U.S. Coast Guard cutter on routine patrol in the Bering Sea came across the guided missile cruiser from the People’s Republic of China, officials said Monday.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska >> A U.S. Coast Guard ship on routine patrol in the Bering Sea came across a guided missile cruiser from China, officials said Monday.

But it turned out the cruiser wasn’t alone as it sailed about 86 miles north of Alaska’s Kiska Island, on Sept. 19.

Two other Chinese naval ships and four Russian naval vessels, including a destroyer, were spotted in single formation, the patrol boat, known as a cutter called Kimball, discovered.

The Honolulu-based Kimball, a 418-foot vessel, observed as the ships broke formation and dispersed. A C-130 Hercules provided air support for the Kimball from the Coast Guard station in Kodiak.

“While the formation has operated in accordance with international rules and norms, we will meet presence with presence to ensure there are no disruptions to U.S. interests in the maritime environment around Alaska,” Rear Adm. Nathan Moore, Seventeenth Coast Guard District commander said.

The Coast Guard said Operation Frontier Sentinel guidelines call for meeting “presence with presence” when strategic competitors operate in and around U.S. waters.

The Kimball will continue to monitor the area.

The Coast Guard did not immediately respond to questions about the incident from The Associated Press.

The Chinese and Russian formation came a month after NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned about China’s interest in the Arctic and Russia’s military buildup there.

Stoltenberg said Russia has set up a new Arctic Command and has opened hundreds of new and former Soviet-era Arctic military sites, including deep-water ports and airfields.

China has declared itself a “near Arctic” state and plans to build the world’s largest icebreaker, he said.

“Beijing and Moscow have also pledged to intensify practical cooperation in the Arctic. This forms part of a deepening strategic partnership that challenges our values and interests,” Stoltenberg said in a visit to Canada’s north.

This wasn’t the first time Chinese naval ships have sailed near Alaska waters. In September 2021, Coast Guard cutters in the Bering Sea and North Pacific Ocean encountered Chinese ships, about 50 miles off the Aleutian Islands.

Comments (20)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature

Scroll Up