missiles over the strait
The Chinese army began its largest military exercises around Taiwan at noon yesterday, which included the launch of conventional missiles off the northeast and southwest coasts of the island. The Taiwanese Ministry of Defense confirmed that Beijing fired a total of 11 Dongfeng ballistic missiles from near the Matsu Islands and could be seen and heard from Pingtan Island, one of the closest points in mainland China to Taiwan.
The shells “hit the target accurately,” according to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Theater Command. After considering the mission “successful” to test the performance of the missiles, the command’s spokesman, Shi Yi, announced the end of the blockade of air and sea space for yesterday afternoon off the western coast of Taiwan. .
At least 40 commercial flights had to be canceled yesterday and, according to the BBC, up to 900 flights will be affected by the blockades caused by the Chinese maneuvers, which will last until Sunday.
Dongfeng surface-to-surface ballistic missiles are the main weapon of the PLA Missile Force. The Global Times a newspaper close to the Chinese government, published a recording of launches in a video reminiscent of those regularly carried out by North Korea.
Nancy Pelosi visits the border between the two Koreas while Beijing launches missiles in the style of Pyongyang
Just yesterday the Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, whose trip to Taiwan this week has multiplied Beijing’s anger, approached the border between the two Koreas, specifically the village of Panmunjom, known as Joint Security Area (JSA), in a visit that South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol described as “powerful deterrence against North Korea.” Pelosi, before flying to Japan to continue her Asian tour, declined to comment on Kim Jong Un’s North Korean regime or Taiwan.
With a hundred combat aircraft – between fighters and bombers – and a dozen warships, according to Chinese state television, this week’s military exercises are the largest drills that Beijing has carried out in front of Taiwan since 1995 , when Beijing fired missiles to show its displeasure over a visit by then-Taiwanese President Lee Teng Hui to Washington and the United States sent two carrier groups to the region, sailing one through the Taiwan Strait.
Before the drills officially began yesterday, Chinese navy ships and fighter jets briefly crossed the line over the strait that Taiwan considers its safety zone several times, according to Taipei sources.
By noon, the Chinese and Taiwanese ships remained close to each other, while the Taiwanese armed forces deployed their missile systems and took off their fighter planes to follow the paths of the Chinese planes.
Russia describes the trip of the US high representative to Taiwan as “unnecessary provocation”
The Taiwanese Foreign Ministry warned that China “is trying to change the status quo” of the island with exercises that “threaten” its “security”. For this reason, he urged countries to support and defend freedom and democracy. The US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, said from Pnom Pen (Cambodia), where the summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is being held, that he hoped that China “does not manufacture a crisis” or ” look for a pretext to increase its aggressive military activity”. Meanwhile, the US aircraft carrier ronald reagan continued to conduct routine operations in the Philippine Sea, which includes waters southeast of Taiwan, as scheduled in its plan to support a “free and open” Indo-Pacific region, according to a US Navy spokesman. USA
Russia assured that Beijing has the “sovereign right” to carry out the exercises around Taiwan, said Kremlin spokesman Dimitri Peskov, while accusing the United States of fueling tensions in the region with the visit. of the third American authority to the island on Tuesday and Wednesday. Repeating China’s arguments, Peskov said that “the tension in the region was caused by the visit of Nancy Pelosi … an absolutely unnecessary visit and an unnecessary provocation.”
Asean warns of a “calculation error”
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), which is holding a meeting of foreign ministers in Pnom Pen (Cambodia), expressed its concern by warning yesterday that tensions between China and the US over Taiwan could cause ” open conflicts and unforeseeable consequences between great powers”, which he asked to “refrain from provocative actions”. The Asean statement avoids referring explicitly to Nancy Pelosi’s visit to the island and the reprisals taken by China, whose Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, did not attend yesterday’s gala dinner with his counterparts, the American and the Japanese among them. According to the Reuters agency, he entered the room to leave immediately without giving any explanations. Asean warned in its statement that “recent events” could “lead to a miscalculation”, for which it called for “maximum temperance” and “refrain from provocative actions”. Members of the association offered to “play a constructive role in facilitating a peaceful dialogue between all parties.”