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China, US exchange comments on military maneuvers near Taiwan | Military news




The US Navy sent a ship to the Taiwan Strait after China practiced military exercises

The US Navy sent its second ship in as many weeks to the Taiwan Strait on Tuesday as tensions with China erupted again in East Asian seas.

The US 7th Fleet said the USS Port Royal, a Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser, sailed near Taiwan in accordance with international law.

The US Navy and its allies regularly conduct freedom of navigation patrols around Taiwan, a self-governing democracy that China claims as its own.

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s Eastern Theater Command said it was tracking the US cruiser on Tuesday, according to state media, and accused the United States of showing support for the breakaway forces of the Taiwan independence.

The Eastern Theater Command made similar statements in late April after the US Navy sailed another warship through the 180 kilometer wide Taiwan Strait.

The exercise appears to be the latest in a tit-for-tat swap with Beijing, said Michael Mazza, a nonresident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, though there’s no reason to be concerned yet. worry.

I think these interactions are becoming the new normal frequent moments of somewhat heightened tension, but nothing too dangerous, he told Al Jazeera.

The PLA, meanwhile, has engaged in its own military exercises.

On Friday, Beijing sent 18 fighter jets to the Taiwan Air Defense Identification Zone, a land and sea area around southern China and Taiwan monitored by the Taiwanese military.

It was the biggest sortie since Jan. 23, when Beijing sent 39 planes.

On Tuesday, the PLA carried out 100 sorties from its aircraft carrier Liaoning, stationed off Okinawa, a Japanese island northeast of Taiwan that is also home to a US military base.

The PLA was likely testing Liaoning’s capacity and the speed at which planes can take off and land, said Liao Kitsch Yen-fan, military and cyber business consultant for Doublethink Lab in Taiwan.

They test endurance and capacity, and the latest cruises have tested things like running refueling and endurance, he said, to optimize performance.

But the Liaoning test also had political significance, he said, after the US State Department also angered Beijing by changing language regarding Taiwan on its official website this week.

The website previously said that the United States does not support Taiwan independence and acknowledged that there is only one China consisting of both China and Taiwan. Instead, he simply refers to Taiwan as a close ally in Asia.

The policy has long been seen as a workaround to the contested political status of Taiwan, whose official name is the Republic of China, though it has all but abandoned its claims to represent China since its transition to democracy in the 1960s. 1990.

Although largely symbolic, the abandonment of these references is the latest show of support for Taiwan by the United States. Under President Donald Trump and now President Joe Biden, the two sides have grown closer, and the shift is reflected in more vocal support as well as arms sales.




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