Tension Rise as China Conducts Military Drills Near Taiwan


China embarked on the second day of military exercises near Taiwan to assess the ability for joint power seizure, strikes, and territorial control, as stated by People’s Liberation Army spokesperson Li Xi. The drills began on Thursday, labelled by Beijing as a response to Taiwan’s separatist actions, following the recent inauguration of Taiwan’s new president, Lai Ching-te, just three days prior.

Lai has frequently proposed talks with China, but these offers have been turned down. He asserts that only the people of Taiwan should determine their future and opposes China’s claims of sovereignty. China, viewing Taiwan as its territory under democratic control, criticised Lai’s inauguration speech. In the speech, Lai urged Beijing to halt its threats and emphasised that the two sides of the strait are independent entities, not subordinate to each other.

The military exercises include combined sea-air combat readiness patrols, targeting key locations, and coordinated operations across Taiwan and its surrounding islands like Kinmen, Matsu, Wuqiu, and Dongyin. Various branches of the Chinese military, including the army, navy, air force, and rocket force, are participating in the drills.

In reaction, Taiwan has activated its sea, air, and land forces in response to the military exercises.