Taiwan says China military drills appear to simulate attack
A White House spokesperson said that China is trying to “change the status quo” through its military drills around Taiwan, according to Reuters.
“These activities are a significant escalation in China’s efforts to change the status quo. They are provocative, irresponsible, and raise the risk of miscalculation,” the spokesperson said. “They are also at odds with our long-standing goal of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, which is what the world expects.”
Taiwan said Saturday that China’s military drills appear to simulate an attack on the self-ruled island, after multiple Chinese warships and aircraft crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait following U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei that infuriated Beijing.
Taiwan’s armed forces issued an alert, dispatched air and naval patrols around the island, and activated land-based missile systems in response to the Chinese exercises, the Ministry of National Defense said. As of 5 p.m., 20 Chinese aircraft and 14 ships continued to carry out sea and air exercises around the Taiwan Strait, it said.
The ministry said that zones declared by China as no-go areas during the exercises for other ships and aircraft had “seriously damaged the peace.” It emphasized that Taiwan’s military does not seek war, but would prepare and respond for it accordingly.
Japan’s prime minister, Fumio Kishida, said Chinese military drills near Taiwan were a threat to regional security. Beijing announced four days of drills that are expected to finish on Sunday. The drills are a “serious problem that impacts our national security and the safety of our citizens”, Kishida told reporters, speaking after a meeting with the US House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, in Tokyo on Friday.
North Korea has denounced Nancy Pelosi as “the worst destroyer of international peace and stability”, after the US House speaker expressed her commitment during a visit to South Korea to achieving the North’s denuclearisation. It also condemned her trip to Taiwan.