China’s largest-ever military exercises around Taiwan were coming to a close on Sunday, following U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s controversial visit to the autonomous island last week.
The Chinese government has been furious over the visit of Pelosi, the second U.S. president to succeed him, and has scrapped a series of talks and cooperation agreements with Washington, particularly on climate change and defense.
Those exercises were due to end on Sunday, but Beijing has announced that new exercises in the Yellow Sea, located between China and the Korean peninsula, will run until Aug. 15.
A seventh zone in waters east of Taiwan said it would be in effect until 10 a.m. local time (0300 GMT) on Monday.
Some shipping lanes are still affected in Area 7, and authorities will continue to monitor vessel movements there, according to the Taipei Municipal Government.
It added that the exercise focused on “testing joint firepower and long-range airstrike capabilities on the ground.”
Beijing has also sent drones over Taiwan’s outlying islands, he added.
China’s defense ministry did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday’s expected end of the exercises.
To show just how close Chinese forces are to Taiwan’s coast, Beijing’s military released a video of an Air Force pilot filming the island’s coastline and mountains from his cockpit.
The exercise also confirmed that Beijing launched a ballistic missile over Taiwan’s capital, according to Chinese state media.
Taiwan’s foreign ministry called on Beijing on Saturday to “immediately stop its provocative actions to escalate tensions and intimidate the Taiwanese people.”
“In some areas, the PLA may even exceed U.S. capabilities,” Grant Newsham, a researcher at the Japan Strategic Research Forum and a former U.S. Navy officer, told AFP.
– “Punish the world” –
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said in a meeting with his Philippine counterpart on Saturday that Washington was “determined to act responsibly” to avert a serious global crisis.
The United Nations also called on the two superpowers to continue working together.
first published as China’s largest military exercises in Taiwan come to an end
China’s largest military exercises in Taiwan come to an end
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