Chinese General Says Beijing Won't Give "An Inch" Over Drill Site

Lieutenant Colonel Kurt Smith (L) escorts the People's Republic of China Liberation Army Chief of the General Staff General Fang Fenghui (R) to review US troops during a full honors arrival ceremony with US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey at the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, USA, 15 May 2014 (DPA).

WASHINGTON (DPA) — China's military chief said Thursday that the country would not concede any ground in the ongoing territory disputes in the South China Sea.

The territory in question had been "passed down by our ancestors" before and China would not lose "an inch," General Fang Fenghui told reporters in Washington.

"We do not make trouble, we do not create trouble" Fang said, "but we are not afraid of trouble."

The statement came a day after riots broke out in Vietnam in response to China moving a drilling platform into an area that Hanoi claims is its exclusive economic zone.

One Chinese worker was killed when the protests turned violent at a Taiwanese-owned steel mill in central Vietnam.

Fang is on a visit to the United States to visit various defence institutions and his US counterpart.