Today: Wednesday, 21 February 2024 year

China protests US over military plane flying over Taiwan Strait

China protests US over military plane flying over Taiwan Strait

The flight of a P-8A Poseidon anti-submarine patrol aircraft over the Taiwan Strait on June 24 endangers peace and stability in the region, and Beijing opposes it, said Shi Yi, spokesman for the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Area Command.

“The actions of the American side are deliberate interference and violation of the regional situation, and endanger peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. We strongly oppose it,” Shi Yi said, adding that Chinese troops are constantly on high alert and “resolutely defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

Earlier, the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command reported that a P-8A Poseidon patrol aircraft crossed the Taiwan Strait and said that it thus demonstrated “the commitment of the United States to a free and open Indo-Pacific region,” CNN reported.

The United States will continue to fly, sail and operate wherever international law allows, including within the Taiwan Strait. By acting within the Taiwan Strait in accordance with international law, the United States supports the rights and freedoms of navigation of all nations,” the US command said in a statement.

On June 21, the Taiwan Ministry of Defense reported that at least 29 Chinese military aircraft entered the air defense zone. Two days later, the agency recorded another 22 aircraft in the island zone.

Prior to this, the US backed Taiwan’s claim that the strait that separates the island from the Chinese mainland is an international waterway, meaning that there is international law in place that guarantees freedom on the high seas, including freedom of navigation and overflight.

Taiwan is an island in the South China Sea, about 150 km off the coast of China. It is separated from China by the Taiwan Strait. In 1949, during the revolution, the territory declared secession from China, but Beijing considers it one of the Chinese provinces.
The US does not have official diplomatic relations with Taiwan, but at the same time sells arms to Taiwan. Officially, the United States, like Russia, supports the One China principle.

At the end of May, US President Joe Biden said that Washington was ready for a military response to China’s possible use of force against Taiwan. After that, The New York Times wrote that the White House stepped up efforts to re-equip the island’s defense system to repel a possible Chinese attack, using the experience of supplying weapons to Ukraine.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry protested in connection with Biden’s speech and stated that “Taiwan is an integral part of the territory of China.” Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Wu Qian warned that the Chinese army would go to any lengths to prevent Taiwan from separating from the country and protect its territorial integrity.