Chinese ‘planes and warships’ cross ‘middle line’ of Taiwan Strait: ‘highly provocative’ military exercise

Chinese 'planes and warships' cross 'middle line' of Taiwan Strait: 'highly provocative' military exercise

“Since 11 a.m., several groups of Chinese warplanes and warships conducted exercises around the Strait of Taiwan and crossed the midline of the strait,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

The military and the Chinese government have not yet formally confirmed Chinese missiles flying over Taiwan during these maneuvers, while Taiwanese officials declined to confirm.

Taiwan’s defense ministry protested, “This Chinese military exercise, whether it is the launch of ballistic missiles or the deliberate crossing of the strait’s midline, is a highly provocative act.”

Since Thursday, China has been conducting massive maneuvers to mobilize the air force, navy and ballistic missiles in six maritime zones around Taiwan in response to a visit to the island this week by the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. Nancy Pelosi. Taipei reported 49 Chinese air incursions into its ADIZ on Wednesday and Thursday, including 44 beyond the midline.

An unofficial border between Taiwan and mainland China, the Middle Line was once respected by both armies and was rare for Chinese military aircraft or ships to cross. But Chinese incursions have multiplied since Beijing declared in 2020 that this unofficial border no longer existed.

In a video released Thursday evening, Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen urged Beijing to show “clarity and restraint”, saying Taipei did not want to escalate tensions but was ready to defend itself.

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