Asia. China surrounds Taiwan to test its ability to “take power” there

Asia. China surrounds Taiwan to test its ability to “take power” there
Asia. China surrounds Taiwan to test its ability to “take power” there

Chinese warships and fighter planes surround Taiwan on Friday, on the second day of military maneuvers intended according to Beijing to test its ability to “take power” in the autonomous island after the inauguration of the new president.

These maneuvers, called “Joint Sword-2024A”, come after the swearing-in on Monday of Lai Ching-te, whose inauguration speech was perceived by China as an “admission of Taiwan’s independence”. Started Thursday morning, they involve the army, the navy, the air force and the rocket unit. They are due to last until Friday inclusive but analysts warn that they could be extended or renewed soon.

“Severe punishment”

Their goal is to verify the “capability of seizing power and joint strikes, as well as controlling key territories,” Li Xi, spokesperson for the Chinese army’s Eastern Theater Command, said Friday. Beijing presented these military exercises on Thursday as a “severe punishment” against the “separatists” of the island who will end “in blood”.

Videos released by the Chinese military on Friday showed soldiers running out of a building to their combat stations and fighter jets taking off to the sound of military music. According to state television CCTV, Chinese naval officers called on their Taiwanese counterparts not to “resist reunification by force”.

An animated Chinese military graphic showed missiles raining down on key targets to the north, south and east of the island, with a message claiming it would “cut the blood vessels of the independence of Taiwan.

“Irrational behavior”

Four Chinese coast guard vessels entered the “forbidden waters” of two Taiwanese islands on Friday, Taipei said. “This is the eighth time this month that Chinese coast guard vessels have sailed in prohibited waters,” said the Taiwanese coast guard, which “urged China to exercise restraint and immediately stop his irrational behavior.”

Taiwan will “defend the values ​​of freedom and democracy”, promised Thursday Lai, described by Beijing as a “dangerous separatist” for his past declarations in favor of the independence of the island, even if he has since moderated his speech . “I will stand on the front line with our brothers and sisters in the army to defend national security together,” he assured.

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