BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s army just lately carried out air and naval drills alongside its southeast coast, the Defence Ministry stated on Sunday, following the most recent arms gross sales from the USA to self-ruled Taiwan, which China claims as a renegade province.
In a quick assertion, and with out giving a precise geographical location, the ministry stated that the Individuals’s Liberation Military had in “current days” held the workouts.
“These drills have been routine preparations in accordance with annual plans for the army,” it stated, with out elaborating.
China’s southeast coast is without doubt one of the nation’s most delicate areas because it faces Taiwan throughout the slim Taiwan Strait. China deems democratic Taiwan to be a wayward province, to be taken by pressure if wanted.
On Friday, China stated it could impose sanctions on U.S. companies concerned in a deal to promote $2.2 billion price of tanks, missiles and associated tools to Taiwan, saying it harmed China’s sovereignty and nationwide safety.
That announcement got here as Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen was visiting New York on a transit cease to diplomatic allies within the Caribbean, a visit that has additionally infuriated Beijing, additional straining Sino-U.S. ties already affected by a bitter commerce warfare.
In a press release on Sunday, Taiwan’s Presidential Workplace cited Nationwide Safety Council Deputy Secretary-Normal Tsai Ming-yen as saying President Tsai had spoken by phone with U.S. Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi whereas she was in the USA and met with different senators and members of Congress, with out naming them.
President Tsai stated Taiwan and the USA can each forge even nearer ties, and in addition thanked the USA for “the significance it attaches to the safety of the Taiwan Strait” and the just lately introduced arms sale, the assertion stated.
President Tsai additionally promised the USA that sooner or later within the Indo-Pacific area, Taiwan will proceed to play a accountable partnership function, and defend democratic values and peace and stability within the area with like-minded international locations, the assertion added.
Tsai has repeatedly warned of the risk from its big neighbor China and has vowed to defend Taiwan’s safety, democracy and lifestyle.
China has in recent times stepped up its army drills round Taiwan, together with repeatedly flying what Beijing calls “island encirclement” workouts and sending warships into the waters round Taiwan.
Reporting by Ben Blanchard; enhancing by Christian Schmollinger