China resumes military exercises around Taiwan due to the visit of five US congressmen to the island | International
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Five days after announcing the cessation of some maneuvers around Taiwan, the People’s Liberation Army (EPL, the Chinese Armed Forces) has resumed war practices on Monday in response to the new visit to the island of five US congressmen. The trip of this delegation has been much more discreet than that of the president of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, which took place on August 2. That 19-hour stop, during her tour of Asia-Pacific, infuriated China, which had been warning for weeks that, if the Democratic legislator set foot in ancient Formosa (which she considers an inalienable part of her territory), the giant Asian would not hesitate to take strong action. That’s how it was: Beijing froze the dialogue with Washington on key issues, sanctioned the import of 2,000 Taiwanese products, toughened the discourse against Taipei, and launched unprecedented war exercises in the region.
The PLA confirmed on Monday that it has organized joint combat readiness patrols and exercises in the sea and airspace around Taiwan in order to dissuade Washington and Taipei “from continuing their political tricks.” Wu Qian, a spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of Defense, declared for his part that these new exercises are “a resolute counterattack and a solemn deterrent to the continuous provocations of the United States and Taiwan, which undermine peace and stability in the strait”. From the military portfolio they have emphasized that the visit of the five congressmen – led by a Democrat – sends the wrong signal to the Taiwanese independence forces.
The Taiwanese Ministry of Defense has reported that 15 Chinese military aircraft have crossed the median dividing line today, an unofficial border between the mainland and the island, but which both had tacitly respected until the recent escalation of tensions.
On Sunday, four Democratic members of the House of Representatives and one Republican landed in Taipei to meet with top Taiwanese leaders to “discuss US-Taiwan relations, regional security, trade and investment, global supply constraints, climate change and other important issues of mutual concern.
In contrast to Pelosi’s visit – received with great fanfare – this delegation’s visit has been characterized by its low profile. The meeting with the Taiwanese president, Tsai Ing-wen, has been behind closed doors and no live images have been published on social networks, a common practice when high-level foreign guests meet with the island’s leaders. According to sources cited by the South China Morning PostTsai has thanked lawmakers for her visit, which she saw as a sign of strong US support in the face of mounting threats from Beijing.
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The group of US representatives has also met with Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu and members of the legislature to discuss issues related to security and economic relations. “In all the meetings, the delegation had the opportunity to exchange opinions on issues of importance to the United States and Taiwan,” reported the American Institute in Taiwan, Washington’s representation on the island.
“We greatly appreciate the visit of the bicameral and bipartisan delegation from the United States Congress, led by Senator [Ed] Markey. Authoritarian China cannot dictate how democratic Taiwan makes friends, gains support, remains resilient, and shines as a beacon of freedom,” he tweeted. the official account of the Taiwanese Foreign Ministry. Ed Markey, meanwhile, expressed in a tweet who have traveled to the island “to reaffirm the support of the United States to Taiwan and promote stability and peace in the strait.” Pelosi already promised during his visit that Washington “will not abandon” Taipei.
Senator Ed Markey chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s subcommittee on East Asia, Pacific and International Cybersecurity Policy. He is one of the few members of the US Congress who voted in 1979 in favor of the Taiwan Relations Act (an act that defines ties between Washington and Taipei in the absence of formal diplomatic relations), which he is still active.
Under the one-China principle, Washington recognizes Beijing as the legitimate government of all of China, while maintaining economic and military ties with Taipei, to the point that on three occasions President Joe Biden stated that his country would defend the island. militarily in case of attack. Precisely because of this “ambiguity”, the Taiwanese question has become one of the most delicate points, and one that generates more tensions and disagreements, between the two main world economic powers.
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