Beijing, Nov 2 (EFE).- China’s military on Thursday condemned the passage of US and Canadian warships through the Taiwan Strait at a time when the Chinese aircraft carrier Shandong was carrying out an exercise in waters near the island.
Sailors participate in the inauguration ceremony of the USS Rafael Peralta ship in San Diego, California, US, on July 29, 2017. EFE-EPA FILE/David Maung
“The destroyer USS Rafael Peralta and the Canadian frigate Ottawa sailed through the waters of the Taiwan Strait on November 1, causing a public stir,” Chinese military spokesperson Shi Yi said in a statement published on the official Weibo account of the Eastern Theater Command of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.
Weibo is a social media platform similar to X, which is blocked in the Asian country.
Shi said that the Eastern Theater Command organized troops to follow and monitor American warships.
“The Eastern Theater forces are always on high alert, ready to defend national sovereignty, security, and regional peace and stability,” the spokesperson added.
The presence of the warships in the area coincides with exercises led by the Shandong aircraft carrier of the Chinese military in waters near the island of Taiwan.
In recent days, additional PLA aviation and naval forces have joined these exercises that began on Oct. 26.
Taiwan’s defense authorities announced on Wednesday that they had detected 43 PLA aircraft and seven vessels near the island.
Taiwanese authorities said that many of these aircraft and vessels crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait.
Taiwan Strait’s median line is an unofficial boundary that both Taipei and Beijing had largely respected until last year, when Chinese planes began repeatedly crossing it.
In September, Taipei reported record numbers of incursions by the Chinese military, which it denounced as China’s “military harassment.”
Taiwan, where the Chinese nationalist army retreated after defeat by communist troops in the civil war, has been governed autonomously since 1949, although China claims sovereignty over the island.
China considers it a rebel province, and it has not ruled out “reunification” by force. EFE