Beijing simulates attack on Taiwan as Chinese exercises continue on third day

A large number of Chinese military planes and ships crossed the middle of the Taiwan Strait on Saturday, simulating a ground strike on the self-governing island that Beijing claims.

The exercises came on the third day of a promised four-day series of military exercises by the Chinese military, the People’s Liberation Army, after the US House of Representatives speaker.

Nancy Pelosi‘s

A visit to Taipei earlier this week.

Defense analysts said Saturday’s exercises build on China’s rehearsals in recent days for a possible attack on Taiwan, demonstrating Beijing’s ability to enforce an effective air and sea blockade prior to an amphibious landing.

The main Communist Party’s People’s Daily described the maneuvers as “a simulation of ground strikes,” while Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said its military issued warnings from its defense radar system and deployed air reconnaissance patrols, naval ships and ground missiles in response. It was also described as a simulated attack on the island. It said it had spotted 14 ships and 20 aircraft, 14 of which crossed the middle of the Taiwan Strait.

A Taiwanese fighter landed at an air base in Hsinchu on Saturday.


Richie B Tongo/Shutterstock

The exercises will help the People’s Liberation Army gain more practical experience in the event of a real attack on Taiwan, said Su Tzu-yun, a security expert in Taipei with the National Defense and Security Research Institute, which is backed by the Taiwan military. But Mr. Su also said that expanding the exercises would strengthen the West’s vigilance toward China.

In recent days, the People’s Liberation Army has increased the frequency with which its ships and aircraft cross the so-called midline, a hypothetical boundary located halfway between the Chinese mainland and the main island of Taiwan. Beijing does not recognize the existence of the line.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, speaking in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh on Saturday, where he met with his regional counterparts, defended China’s actions around Taiwan as a legitimate response to the United States’ actions, and said Beijing would resolutely crush the Taiwan authorities’ imagination of “reliance on the United States to seek on independence.”

“The noose around their necks will get tighter,” Wang said, referring to what he called the pro-independence forces in Taiwan.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi visited the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh.


Tang Shin Suthi/AFP/Getty Images

Saturday exercises follow the People’s Liberation Army Island military siege simulator On Friday, Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense said there were 68 Chinese warplanes and 13 Chinese warships. paid actions More than 200 merchant ships To leave the waters surrounding Taiwan, including the Taiwan Strait, a major shipping route in the region.

Major-General Meng Xiangqing, a professor at the National Defense University of the People’s Liberation Army, told China’s state radio Friday that the People’s Liberation Army sent missiles directly over the main island of Taiwan for the first time, although the Taiwan government said the missile trajectories were. So high that they did not pose dangers to the island.

However, some in Taiwan have taken to social media to criticize the military for not revealing details before this information was released by Japan. Taiwan’s military said it wanted to “protect its intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities.”

In the run-up to Ms Pelosi’s visit, prominent Chinese commentators including Hu Xijin, former editor-in-chief of the state-run Global Times, stirred up nationalist fervor and expectations of a swift and forceful response from Beijing.

Beijing has warned that Ms Pelosi’s trip, if carried out, will lead to unspecified countermeasures. Ms Pelosi was also warned in briefings with senior White House and Pentagon officials of the lasting damage her trip could cause to US-China relationsalthough she was never asked to skip the trip, according to a US official familiar with the discussions.

a lot on Chinese social media They expressed disappointment at what they saw as lowly countermeasures after Mrs. Pelosi’s departure, and directed their indignation toward Mr. Hu to mislead the public with false predictions.

Disappointed with the Chinese countermeasures, many directed their anger toward Hu Xijin, the former editor-in-chief of the Global Times.


Tingshu Wang / Reuters

In an apparent reference to public sentiment, Chinese state media exaggerated displays of military power during the exercises that followed Ms Pelosi’s departure. On Saturday morning, the People’s Daily touted the People’s Liberation Army’s precision strikes and siege capabilities on China’s Twitter-like platform Weibo, adding the hashtag: “What China says, China will do.”

“Outside meddling forces and ‘Taiwan independence’ separatist forces will now have a deeper appreciation of what countermeasures mean,” the People’s Daily wrote in its post, which garnered more than 200,000 likes. Similar sites during military exercises dominated Weibo.

Separately, Ouyang Lee-hsin, vice president of the National Chung Shan Institute of Science and Technology in Taiwan, an army-backed research body that develops and manufactures defense technology, was found dead in his hotel room in southern Taiwan, according to the institute. The hospital determined after a forensic examination that 57-year-old Ouyang had died of a heart attack.

Police said there was no evidence of tampering, and said they had no plans to investigate further. As part of his duties, Mr. Ouyang oversaw the production of missiles, a key component of Taiwan’s defenses against any military attack by Beijing.

On Saturday, Politico reported that People’s Liberation Army officials did not answer the calls from their Pentagon counterparts, citing unnamed sources. Spokesmen in Hawaii for US Indo-Pacific Command did not respond to requests for comment.

The closest point in China to Taiwan.


Ng Han Gwan/The Associated Press

write to Karen Hao at [email protected] and Joyo Wang at [email protected]

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