The infamous Chinese spy balloon was shot down on Saturday off the coast of South Carolina. China says it was an “an accidental incident caused by force majeure.” CNBC reports:  

Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Mao Ning urged both sides to remain calm after the U.S. said it shot down what it called a Chinese spy balloon. 

“What I want to emphasize regarding this unexpected accident is that both sides, especially the U.S., should remain calm,” Mao said in Mandarin, according to a CNBC translation. 

She was speaking at the first of the ministry’s daily press conferences after U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken indefinitely postponed his trip to Beijing following news that a suspected Chinese surveillance balloon was flying over the United States. 

Blinken was originally expected to visit Beijing on Sunday and Monday, although the U.S. had offered few official details and the Chinese side never confirmed the trip. The U.S. military shot down the balloon over the weekend. 

China has called the balloon a “civilian unmanned airship” and said it was primarily conducting weather research before it was blown off course. 

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