China is described Its military exercises around Taiwan As evidence of its ability to blockade the autonomous island in the event of war, as the operations were in response to a visit by the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives
I entered the second day.
Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense said at least 68 Chinese warplanes and 13 warships carried out exercises off the Taiwan coast on Friday. During the operation, the ministry said some planes and ships sent by the Chinese military crossed the center line in the Taiwan Strait, a theoretical boundary that Taipei says demarcates the boundaries of areas of effective control.
The flurry of military overflights by Beijing on Friday — setting a record for such activity since the Taiwan military began disclosing data in September 2020 — came after China surrounded Taiwan with missile and ballistic missile fire the day before. Chinese military experts and Chinese state media The four-day exercise was described as unprecedented. US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, in Cambodia for a regional meeting, called it a “major escalation”.
Chinese forces carried out live fire in six designated areas facing Taiwan’s military bases and its largest commercial ports, allowing the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, To form a siege around the island For the first time, a breakthrough was brought about by the state media in Beijing. The areas overlap what Taiwan claims to be its territorial waters.
Major-General Meng Xiangqing, a professor at the National Defense University of the People’s Liberation Army, told Chinese State Radio that the People’s Liberation Army fired missiles over the main island of Taiwan on Thursday for the first time. General Meng did not specify how many were launched, but said they passed over an area with Taiwan stations for Patriot anti-missile batteries, which are monitored by the US Navy. Taiwan said Beijing fired 11 ballistic missiles near the island.
General Meng said the exercises simulated a real war, as China demonstrated the accuracy and movement of weapons that could now cover the entire island.
“We can say that we have the ability to turn the exercises into a real war at any time,” he said.
It was also the first occasion that Chinese aircraft carriers participated in a group exercise, General Meng said. Two Chinese carriers, Liaoning and Shandong, trained together earlier this week ahead of Ms Pelosi’s arrival in Taiwan, which coincided with the 95th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Liberation Army. The location of the carriers could not be determined.
Meanwhile, the White House announced that the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan and its escort ships would remain in the area to monitor the situation. The White House also summoned Chinese Ambassador Qin Gang.
“We have made clear to the ambassador that Beijing’s actions are of concern to Taiwan and to us and our partners around the world,” White House spokesman John Kirby said in a statement Friday.
China also said on Friday that it had suspended climate change talks with the United States and canceled some military exchanges in response to Ms Pelosi’s visit. Countermeasures include canceling calls between two military leaders and two security forces, and halting cooperation in fighting crime. It also announced sanctions against Ms. Pelosi and her immediate family.
The day before, the Eastern Theater Command of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army said it had successfully completed all live-fire operations in the waters off eastern Taiwan, Lifting traffic controls in the area. By late Friday, she said the second day of rehearsals had gone ahead as planned. State radio broadcast footage showing flying jet fighters and sailing warships, but did not include images of live fire.
More than 200 ships sailing regularly in the waters around Taiwan have moved from the six regions. Lloyd’s List Intelligence data showed that only a handful of ships were still sailing in those areas on Friday, down from an average of 240 per day over the past week. The Taiwan Strait is a major shipping route, with about half of the global container fleet and 90% of the world’s largest ships by tonne transiting the waterway last year.
Data shows that Kaohsiung and Keelung, Taiwan’s two largest ports, remain open for business, but vessel arrivals have fallen by a quarter over the past two days.
“Taiwan will not escalate the conflict, but we will firmly defend our sovereignty, security and democracy.“
While the general mood in Taiwan remained calm after the exercises ended Thursday, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen called on Beijing to act with prudence and restraint.
“Taiwan will not escalate the conflict, but we will resolutely defend our sovereignty, security and democracy,” she said in a video released Thursday.
On Friday, a prominent figure in Taiwan’s world-leading semiconductor industry announced a donation equivalent to $100 million to bolster the island’s civil defense and combat China’s psychological warfare.
Robert Cao, founder
United Microelectronics corp.
, or the UMC, said many Taiwanese would not be impressed by Beijing’s economic might or intimidated by its military might. He urged more people to defend the island.
UMC, a Taiwanese chip maker that also operates two factories in China, referred a request for comment to Mr. Cao himself, without elaborating. Mr. Cao remains the Honorary Chairman of UMC after his retirement and is not involved in the day-to-day operations of the company.
Ms Pelosi, who visited Japan on the last leg of her Asian tour, said Beijing may have seen it visit her As an opportunity to conduct rehearsals said The United States will continue to deal with Taiwan Despite criticism from China.
“We will not allow them to isolate Taiwan,” she said at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday.
In her visit to Taiwan, Ms. Pelosi has defied repeated warnings from Beijing. A US Air Force plane transports its delegation from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Taipei Took a turn for three hoursIt flew over Indonesia and the Philippines before landing in Taipei.
China’s military expert, General Ming, told state radio China that the roundabout was in response to the deterrent effect that China’s spread around Taiwan had.
He said the People’s Liberation Army followed Ms. Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan and kept her under surveillance during the trip. He did not say whether Chinese warplanes had cast shadows on its plane.
Peter Landers in Tokyo and Costas Paris in New York contributed to this article.
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