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WASHINGTON — The US will continue to conduct Freedom of Navigation exercises near disputed lands claimed by China in the South China Sea, and will look to do those exercises in new ways going forward, the head of US Pacific Command said Thursday. Adm. Harry Harris also called Chinese attempts to sway South Korea and the US from placing the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system on the Korean Peninsula “preposterous” and indicated those complaints would not impact whether the two partner nations agree to install the system. Over the last year the US has conducted two freedom of navigation exercises near islands claimed by China. These exercises, essentially drive-bys by US Navy ships, are designed to show Beijing that the US and its allies in the region regard the territory as part of international waters. Harris indicated that the pace of such exercises could increase in the coming months. http://www.defensenews.com/story/defense/naval/2016/02/25/pacom-harris-china-korea-thaad-exercises-south-china-sea/80938062/