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China says carried out drills near Taiwan

By Reuters   May 8, 2022 | 05:11 pm PT
China says carried out drills near Taiwan
China's aircraft carrier Liaoning, July 11, 2017. Photo by Reuters/Bobby Yip
China's armed forces carried out another round of drills near Taiwan last week to improve joint combat operations, the People’s Liberation Army said on Monday, after the island reported a spike in activity.

Taiwan has complained for the past two years about frequent Chinese military activity nearby it, mostly concentrated in the southern and southwestern part of the island's air defense identification zone, or ADIZ.

Taiwan's air force scrambled on Friday to warn away 18 Chinese aircraft that entered its air defense zone, and reported further incursions on Saturday and Sunday, though with fewer aircraft.

The People’s Liberation Army’s Eastern Theater Command said in a statement that naval and air force assets carried out drills from Friday to Sunday to the east and southwest of Taiwan.

The exercises were to "further test and improve the joint combat capability of multiple services and arms", it added, without elaborating.

Taiwan's Defense Ministry said the equipment involved included bombers, fighters and anti-submarine aircraft.

No shots have been fired and the Chinese aircraft have not been flying in Taiwan's air space, but in its ADIZ, a broader area Taiwan monitors and patrols that acts to give it more time to respond to any threats.

Japan last week reported eight Chinese naval vessels, including an aircraft carrier, passed between islands in Japan's southern Okinawa chain, to the northeast of Taiwan.

Taiwan had also been carrying out pre-announced missile and other drills off its southern and southeastern coasts last week.

 
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