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China says it has conducted a “preparedness patrol” on Taiwan

China says it has conducted a "preparedness patrol" on Taiwan

Printed Chinese and Taiwan flags are shown in this illustration taken on April 28, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Rovich/Illustration

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BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s military said on Wednesday it had conducted a combat “readiness patrol” in the seas and airspace around Taiwan in recent days, saying it was a necessary measure to respond to “collusion” between Washington and Taipei. .

China, which claims that Taiwan democratically rules Taiwan as its territory, has escalated its military maneuvers around the island over the past two years or so, as it seeks to pressure Taipei to accept its claims to sovereignty.

China was particularly unhappy with US support for Taiwan.

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US President Joe Biden angered China last week when he appeared to signal a change in US policy and “strategic ambiguity” over Taiwan by saying the United States would intervene militarily if China attacked the island. US officials said there was no change in policy.

The PLA Eastern Theater Command said in a statement that the combat “readiness patrol” took place across Taiwan in recent days and was a “necessary measure against US-Taiwan collusion.”

“Recently, the United States has taken repeated moves on the Taiwan issue, saying one thing and doing another, inciting support for the Taiwan independence forces, which will push Taiwan into a dangerous situation,” the leadership added.

She added that Taiwan is part of China and Chinese forces continue to enhance military training and preparations to “thwart” the interference of outside powers and the actions of those who support Taiwan independence.

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While the statement did not say when the exercises would take place, Taiwan on Monday reported the largest incursion of the Chinese air force since January into its air defense zone. The island’s Defense Ministry said Taiwanese fighters rushed to warn 30 aircraft. Read more

Taiwan has repeatedly complained about such missions in its Air Defense Identification Area, or ADIZ.

No shots were fired and Chinese planes did not fly into Taiwan’s airspace, but into its ADIZ, a wider area that Taiwan monitors and patrols working to give it more time to respond to any threats.

Taiwan says only its own people are entitled to decide the island’s future, rejecting China’s claims to sovereignty.

Taiwan’s government says it wants peace, but will defend itself if necessary.

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Reporting by Ryan Wu. Additional reporting by Ben Blanchard in Taipei. Editing by Tom Hogg and Lincoln Fest.

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.