Ahead of Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, China to begin military drills in Taiwan Strait
Ahead of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s proposed visit, China said it would hold live-fire military drills in the Taiwan Strait.
Reports claimed USS Roland Reagan aircraft carrier sailed near the Fiery Cross Reef in the South China Sea close to Chinese warships with the Chinese navy reportedly monitoring the activities of the US warship.
The Chinese military exercise is set to start on Saturday amid simmering tensions over Taiwan. China considers Taiwan as a breakaway province which it has vowed to seize by force if necessary.
China’s move comes just hours after President Joe Biden spoke to Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday warning him about Taiwan. The Chinese drills are set to take place 120 kilometres from the Taiwanese coast.
Taiwan had earlier conducted a military exercise involving all branches of the military with simulated attacks on thwarting hostile attacks as the military said it had learnt lessons from the Ukraine-Russia conflict.
Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen, who has consistently pushed back China, presided over the annual “Han Kuang” exercises. Taiwan used twenty warships including destroyers and US-built F-16 aircraft during the drills that went on for five days.
China conducted a record number of air incursions into Taiwan last year as the US promised increased military support to Tsai Ing-wen’s government.