A fleet of Chinese warships have been carrying out combat exercises in waters near the Taiwan Strait on a daily basis for more than a week, which is claimed by China as part of its territory.
Since June 17, a formation of navy ships, including a Type 054A frigate and a Type 052C destroyer, have been holding military drills in the vicinity of Taiwan, including in the Bashi Channel and the Taiwan Strait.
The drills tested the military and training abilities of warship, aviation and coastal defense troops, via organizing real combat training in multiple areas of the ocean.
Meanwhile, Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said in a statement the Chinese military vessels were monitored continuously and there was no cause for alarm.
Earlier this month, Taiwan’s military also conducted a series of military exercises on the island. The drills, held annually under the name of Han Kuang, were carried out in the central city of Taichung.
China and Taiwan separated during a civil war in 1949, and Beijing pursues reunification ever since. Chinese officials have never renounced the use of force to bring under China’s control what it sees as a wayward province.
Beijing-Taipei ties have particularly been strained since Tsai took office in 2016, as she declines to acknowledge that both sides are part of “One China”. Washington, too, follows the “One China” policy, but it has flirted with the idea of recognizing Taiwan as independent.
The USA has no diplomatic relations with Taiwan, but maintains military ties with it, forwarding advanced military hardware to the vassal island state.
China is particularly suspicious of the USA’ intentions toward Taiwan, which is a core concern of Beijing when it comes to relations with Washington.
PressTV.com / ABC Flash Point Pacific News 2018.