China continues major military maneuvers around Taiwan

China continues major military maneuvers around Taiwan

On Monday, April 10, China continued the military maneuvers that it began on Saturday and which, according to the Chinese army, were scheduled to last three days. However, the Chinese military announced new exercises on April 11, 13, 15, 17 and 20, near part of the Fujian coast, with entry prohibited for civilian vessels. These operations follow the April 5 meeting in California of Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen with a delegation of US parliamentarians headed by Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy. The meeting was condemned by Beijing, which says its “one China” policy should prevent Taiwanese officials from establishing diplomatic relations with foreign leaders.

However, these maneuvers appear more limited than those carried out by Beijing over Taiwan in August 2022, after the island visit of Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic predecessor of Mr. McCarthy. At that time, China had specially sent several missiles over the island into Japan’s exclusive economic zone, which was the first. The current maneuvers are, after all, far reaching. Their goal is to simulate a “full encirclement” The island has a population of 23 million, according to a spokesperson for the People’s Liberation Army of China “A serious warning against collusion between the separatist forces seeking Taiwan independence and foreign powers”.

And Chinese media reported, on Saturday, that the aim of the maneuvers, which was dubbed the “Joint Sword”, is to secure control Seas, weather and informationThen, on Sunday, to simulate “accurate hits” against “Major targets on the island of Taiwan and the surrounding waters”With the participation of dozens of aircraft and ground forces. On the same day, the Taiwan Ministry of Defense spotted 71 military aircraft and 9 warships About Taiwan Including 45 aircraft that crossed the central line of the Taiwan Strait, considered the border between the island and the mainland, or flew over the Taiwan Air Defense Identification Zone.

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On Sunday, 35 aircraft crossed this intermediate line. On Saturday, President Tsai Ing-wen denounced it“authoritarian expansion” He assured China that Taiwan She will continue to work with the United States and other countries (…) To defend the values ​​of freedom and democracy.. However, so far, the Chinese maneuvers are taking place in the international waters or the territorial waters of China, not the territorial waters of Taiwan. The exercises are scheduled to take place on Monday, 190 km from Taipei and the Chinese aircraft carrier Shandong which sails in the area about 200 nautical miles (370 km) east of the island. American aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in the same area. In addition to the American destroyer USS Milius conducted on Monday “freedom of navigation” In an area of ​​the South China Sea claimed by Beijing. The maneuver instantly qualifies as “Intervention” by China.

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