Taiwan, China hold opposing military drills amid tensions

Following fresh rounds of threatening drills from China, Taiwan is conducting military exercises to demonstrate its capacity to withstand pressure from Beijing to accept Beijing’s political sovereignty over the autonomous island.

The drills on Wednesday come after days of Chinese missile launches and incursions by ships and aircraft from the People’s Liberation Army, the military wing of China’s ruling Communist Party, into Taiwan’s air and seaspace.

We vehemently oppose Communist China’s ongoing military provocations in the air and water surrounding Taiwan “Sun Li-fang, a spokesman for the Taiwan Defense Ministry, told journalists at Hualien Air Force Base.

The military actions of Communist China only give us the chance to practise for conflict, according to Sun.

Joanne Ou, a spokeswoman for Taiwan’s foreign ministry, claimed that China was using recent visits by members of the US Congress, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, as an excuse to step up its efforts to intimidate Taiwan into accepting what it calls its terms for reunification “a peaceful

On these reasons, China has initiated military provocations. This is a ridiculous and inhumane behaviour that also threatens regional stability and obstructs trade and shipping in the Indo-Pacific area, according to Ou.

Taiwan is considered a breakaway province by China, which intends to annex it by force if necessary. China views foreign dignitaries visiting Taiwan as an acknowledgement of China’s sovereignty.

Tuesday saw China put travel bans and other sanctions on Taiwanese political figures in addition to military threats. It is unknown what impact the penalties would have on Taiwan, which is not under the effective legal control of China.

Since immediately after President Tsai Ing-wen of the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party was elected to office in 2016, China has blocked all communication with Taiwan’s government. Tsai won reelection with a big margin in 2020.

The majority of Taiwanese favour keeping the status quo of de facto independence and close economic and social ties between the sides while the DPP also holds control of the legislature.

China charges the US with supporting the island’s independence through the transfer of arms and political contacts between the US and the island’s leadership. The US claims it opposes independence and has no official diplomatic relations with the island, but it is obligated by law to make sure Taiwan can protect itself from Chinese threats, including a blockade.

Aside from putting its military on notice, Taiwan has mostly downplayed the threat posed by the Chinese drills, and life has gone on as usual for its 23 million residents, who have endured more than seven decades of bellicose rhetoric and sabre rattling from China

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