China Begins Largest Ever Military Excercise Around Taiwan

Story Highlights
  • PLA carry out largest ever military exercise in and around Taiwan.
  • Taiwan Defence Ministry calls the drills -irrational behaviour
  • The military exercise commenced a day after United States House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi left Taiwan

The People’s Liberation Army on Thursday shortly after the arrival of US State Speaker Nancy Pelosi began the country’s “largest-ever” military exercises including live firing on the waters and in the airspace surrounding the island of Taiwan.

The live-fire drills and other exercises around Taiwan are to end at 12:00 p.m. (0400 GMT) on Sunday, according to state television. As per reports six major areas around the island were selected for this actual combat exercise and during this period relevant ships and aircraft were not allowed to enter the relevant waters and airspaces.

Taiwan officials have said the drills violate United Nations rules, invade Taiwan’s territorial space and are a direct challenge to free air and sea navigation. China is conducting drills on the busiest international waterways and aviation routes and that is “irresponsible, illegitimate behaviour,” Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said.

China considers Taiwan as an island that is to be unified with itself. Condemning the act, Twain defence Ministry said it will continue to strengthen its vigilance in response to Beijing’s “irrational behaviour” of carrying out live-fire military exercises. It believes that the US authorities are supporting pro-independence camps and giving credence to the idea of Twain as a sovereign nation.

“The Ministry of National Defense emphasized that it will uphold the principle of preparing for war without seeking war,” a press release from the Taiwan government said. “We seek no escalation, but we don’t stand down when it comes to our security and sovereignty,” Taiwan’s defence ministry said.

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