The Pentagon is seeing evidence a Chinese aircraft carrier is making preparations to get underway, days before Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is set to arrive in Beijing.
Satellite evidence shows China's only aircraft carrier is making preparations to get underway, U.S. defense officials have told Fox News.
Known as Lionang, China's aircraft carrier last conducted flight operations in early January in the South China Sea, the same location where U.S. officials suggest the carrier will return.
This week, Japan announced plans to send its largest warship to patrol the South China Sea, drawing the ire of Beijing.
USS Carl Vinson, an American aircraft carrier, is also in the region training with South Korea, and could soon be dispatched to the South China Sea, making for a crowded space with large-deck warships from three different countries.
Lucas Tomlinson is the Pentagon and State Department producer for Fox News Channel. You can follow him on Twitter: @LucasFoxNews