The last day of intensive Chinese military exercises around the island

China on Sunday, August 7, ended its largest-ever military exercises around Taiwan, in an angry reaction to the visit of US House Representative Nancy Pelosi to the island. The move pushed relations between Beijing and Washington to their lowest level in years.

US Number Three, MI Pelosi sparked outrage in China with her visit on Tuesday and Wednesday, the largest by a US lawmaker to Taiwan in 25 years. Beijing responded by suspending a series of talks and bilateral cooperation between China and the United States, particularly in the areas of climate change and defense.

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In response, the Chinese military deployed combat aircraft, warships, and ballistic missiles. Analysts regard this maneuver as a fictitious siege and invasion of Taiwan.

On Sunday, the army conducted “Joint operational maneuvers at sea and in the airspace surrounding the island of Taiwan”., said the Chinese Army’s Eastern Command, which oversees the country’s eastern maritime space — and by extension, Taiwan. These exercises were aimed at “Testing Combined Firepower in the Field and Long-Range Air Strike Capabilities”he added.

Taiwan’s Ministry of Defense confirmed that China sent Airplanes, ships and drones around the strait, “To simulate attacks on the main island of Taiwan and on boats in our waters”.

Six out of seven “temporary danger zones” have been raised

These extensive exercises were scheduled to end at midday, even if Beijing intended to conduct new exercises “live ammunition” Until August 15 in the Yellow Sea that separates China from the Korean Peninsula.

Taiwan’s Ministry of Transportation announced that six of the seven appeared Temporary danger zones That China told airlines to avoid has returned to normal, indicating that the exercises are nearing completion. “Flights and navigation in question can be gradually resumed”He said in a statement. The same source said that the seventh area located in the waters east of Taiwan will remain in place until Monday morning. From the Chinese side, the Ministry of Defense did not respond to a request to confirm the end of the exercises.

To prove how close it is to the Taiwanese coast, the Chinese army on Saturday published a photo, according to which it was taken from one of its military ships, where we see a Taiwan Navy building just a few hundred meters away. This shot may be the closest to the Taiwanese coast ever taken by Chinese forces. The Chinese military also released a video clip of one of its fighter jet pilots showing the coast and mountains of Taiwan from the cockpit mid-flight. According to Chinese state television CCTV, missiles flew over Taiwan this week during exercises across the island – which will be the first.

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Taipei has repeatedly denounced these maneuvers in recent days, and leveled criticism at them “harmful neighbor” And call Beijing on Saturday at the time “Immediately stop raising tension and carrying out provocative actions aimed at intimidating the Taiwanese people.”.

The scale of the maneuvers and Beijing’s decision to withdraw from crucial bilateral dialogues on climate and defense has sparked a barrage of condemnation from the United States and its allies.

US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, on Saturday in Manila denounced “total disproportion” From the Chinese reaction. China should not take “hostage” Discussions about issues like climate change, like this “Do not punish the United States, but the whole world”he added.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned against this “It is impossible to solve the world’s most pressing problems without effective dialogue and cooperation between the two countries.”.

The world with AFP

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