(Beijing) The Chinese army launched three days of military exercises in the Taiwan Strait on Saturday, amid tensions with the island after a meeting in the United States of its president Tsai Ing-wen and the third character of the American State.
The moves “serve as a serious warning against collusion between separatist forces seeking ‘Taiwan independence’ and outside forces, as well as their provocative activities,” Chinese military spokesman Shi said in a statement. Yi.
Live-fire exercises will be held Monday in the Taiwan Strait near the coast of Fujian (east), the province facing the island, local maritime authorities also said.
Taipei said the maneuvers threaten “stability and security” in the Asia-Pacific region.
The announcements follow President Tsai Ing-wen’s visit to the United States this week, where she met with Kevin McCarthy, Speaker of the House of Representatives, on Wednesday. Beijing immediately promised “firm and forceful measures” in retaliation.
China sees with displeasure the rapprochement at work in recent years between the Taiwanese authorities and the United States, which despite the absence of official relations provides the island with substantial military support.
China considers Taiwan (23 million inhabitants) as one of its provinces, which it has not yet managed to reunify with the rest of its territory since the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949.
The United States recognized the People’s Republic of China in 1979 and should theoretically have no official contact with the Republic of China (Taiwan), under the “one China principle” championed by Beijing.
Since Thursday, Beijing has been stepping up military pressure on Taiwan with the dispatch of warships and aircraft to the strait.
The exact location of the new maneuvers is not specified, apart from Monday’s live-fire exercises, which will take place around Pingtan, the closest point in mainland China to Taiwan.
The narrowest part of the strait between the Chinese coast and the island is about 130 kilometers wide.
For several days, China has also reinforced the presence of its coastguards in the strait for exceptional patrols.
On Friday, AFP journalists in Pingtan spotted a military ship and at least two military helicopters transiting the Taiwan Strait.
It was unclear, however, whether the moves represented an increase in the usual number of Chinese patrols in the area.
In August, Beijing launched unprecedented military maneuvers around Taiwan when Democrat Nancy Pelosi, who preceded McCarthy to roost, visited the island.
The response at this stage to the meeting with the American number three has nothing to compare with the summer of 2022.
The Taiwanese Ministry of Defense said on Saturday during its daily update at the start of the day that it had detected 13 aircraft and three Chinese warships around the island.
These military maneuvers come the day after a state visit to China by Emmanuel Macron, during which the question of Taiwan was raised with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
“The conversation was dense and frank” on this subject, the Elysee Palace said on Friday.
“Anyone who thinks China is going to compromise on Taiwan is kidding themselves,” Xi Jinping assured European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen Thursday during a meeting in Beijing, according to comments reported by Chinese diplomacy.