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Taiwan Reports 41 Chinese Military Aircraft Near Island

Photo : Reuters

China reiterated its claim over democratic Taiwan, asserting it as an integral part of its territory and emphasizing its stance on using force, if necessary, to bring the island under Beijing's control. This statement came amidst heightened tensions after Taiwan's defense ministry reported detecting 41 Chinese military aircraft and seven naval vessels in the vicinity of the island within a 24-hour period.

According to Taiwan's defense ministry, 32 of the aircraft crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait, a 180-kilometer waterway separating Taiwan from mainland China. The ministry stated it closely monitored the situation and responded appropriately.

This military activity followed China's publication of new judicial guidelines that included provisions for the death penalty in cases deemed "particularly serious" involving advocates of Taiwanese independence. Beijing's move underscored its firm opposition to any moves towards independence by Taiwan, which it views as a breakaway province.

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The escalation in military maneuvers and provocative actions from Beijing coincided with recent military exercises conducted near Taiwan following the inauguration of Lai Ching-te as Taiwan's new leader. Beijing has labeled Lai as a "dangerous separatist," reflecting its concerns over his pro-independence stance.

The incident on Saturday marked a significant uptick in Chinese military activity around Taiwan, surpassing previous records for the highest number of military aircraft detected in a single day this year. This provocative display underscores the escalating tensions in the Taiwan Strait region, where military posturing and diplomatic maneuvers continue to shape the volatile dynamics between Beijing and Taipei.

June 22, 2024 12:32 p.m. 467

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