Man almost buried when cornice collapses

Man almost buried when cornice collapses
Man almost buried when cornice collapses

AFP

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

China said Friday that the ongoing maneuvers encircling Taiwan were aimed at testing its military capacity to “take power” in the autonomous island, a few days 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 the independence of Taiwan”. Started Thursday morning, they involve the army of land, navy, air force and rocket unit. They are due to last until Friday inclusive but analysts warn that they could be extended or renewed soon. Their objective is to verify the “capacity of seize power and joint strikes, as well as control of key territories,” Li Xi, spokesperson for the Chinese military’s Eastern Theater Command, said on Friday. Military ships and aircraft surrounded Taiwan on Thursday, Beijing affirming that these exercises constituted a “severe punishment” against the “separatists” of the island who will end “in blood”. Taiwan “will defend the values ​​of freedom and democracy”, reacted Thursday Mr. Lai, described by Beijing as a “dangerous separatist” for his past statements in favor of Taiwan’s independence, although he has since moderated his speech. “I will stand on the front line with our brothers and sisters in the military to jointly defend national security,” he added. China considers Taiwan to be one of its provinces, which it has not yet succeeded in reunifying with its territory since the end of the civil war and the coming to power of the communists in 1949. – Call for “restraint” – In recent years, Beijing has intensified its threats and political pressure, economic and military maneuvers on Taiwan. These maneuvers constitute a “severe punishment for the separatist acts of the + independence forces of Taiwan + and a severe warning against the interference and provocation of external forces”, Li Xi indicated on Thursday. They take place “in the Taiwan Strait, to the north, south and east of the island of Taiwan, as well as areas around the islands of Kinmen, Matsu, Wuqiu and Dongyin” – close to the Chinese east coast, a- he said. The UN called on all parties to avoid “refraining from any action that could aggravate tensions” and in Washington, a senior official who requested anonymity affirmed that the United States was “monitoring very closely” the situation and called on China “to show restraint”. The People’s Republic of China says it favors a “peaceful” reunification with the island territory of 23 million inhabitants, but does not rule out using force. During his swearing-in on Monday, Lai Ching-te called on China to “stop its political and military intimidation”. Taiwanese separatists “will be pilloried of shame for history”, the Chinese minister reacted the next day of Foreign Affairs, Wang Yi. On Friday, the official Xinhua news agency and the Communist Party newspaper, the People’s Daily, both published editorials praising the military maneuvers, castigating Mr. Lai and promising to deal him “a severe blow”. Previous large-scale Chinese military exercises around Taiwan took place in August 2023, a “severe warning” according to Beijing after a visit by Mr. Lai, then vice-president. president, in the United States.Beijing had also launched maneuvers of historic scale in August 2022 after the visit to the island of Nancy Pelosi, then speaker of the American House of Representatives.bur-je/cwl/juf/ka /ib

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