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Five Chinese navy ships have been spotted in the Bering Sea, off the Alaska coast, coinciding with President Obama’s visit to the state, a senior defense official confirmed to Fox News.
Navy Commander Bill Urban, a Pentagon spokesman, said Wednesday the sighting marked the first time ships from the People's Liberation Army Navy were seen in the Bering Sea.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters on Wednesday that the Defense Department "positively identified a number of Chinese naval vessels in that region, but based on their analysis, they have not detected any sort of threat or threatening activities."
The U.S. military reportedly has been aware of the ships and tracking their movements for days as they moved through international waters. Earnest said the intent of the ships' presence "is still unclear” while speaking aboard Air Force One as Obama flew near the Bering Sea.