China Calls Military Drills Near Taiwan ‘Warning’ for Separatists, Foreign Powers

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman calls Taiwan’s independence & stability in the Taiwan Strait “incompatible.”

Military exercises conducted by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) near Taiwan are a serious warning for Taiwanese separatists and foreign powers, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said on Monday.

“[The exercises] are a serious warning for Taiwanese separatists promoting the island’s independence and foreign powers that are carrying out provocations. The drills are also a necessary measure to protect the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Wang told a briefing.

The diplomat added that Taiwan’s independence and stability in the Taiwan Strait are incompatible.

On Saturday, Chinese military launched three-day exercises and patrols in the sea and airspace around Taiwan. It came a couple of days after Taiwanese leader Tsai Ing-wen met with US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy during a transit visit to the US on her way back from Guatemala and Belize. The Chinese Foreign Ministry condemned the contacts between US and Taiwanese officials, calling on Washington to stop upgrading relations with the island.

On Sunday, the armed forces of Taiwan registered 70 Chinese aircraft approaching the island, with 35 of them crossing the so called median line of the Taiwan Strait and entering Taiwan’s air defense identification zone. The Taiwanese Defense Ministry also spotted 11 PLA ships in the vicinity of the island.

Taiwan has been governed independently from mainland China since 1949. Beijing views the island as its province, while Taiwan — a territory with its own elected government — maintains that it is an autonomous nation but stops short of declaring independence. Beijing opposes any official contacts of foreign states with Taipei and considers Chinese sovereignty over the island indisputable.

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