Xi Jinping‘s army reportedly launched unprecedented live-fire military drills in six areas that ring Taiwan on Thursday.
What Happened: The Eastern Theatre Command of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) conducted long-range live-fire shooting training in the Taiwan Straits, state media CGTN reported on Thursday.
It also carried out precision strikes on specific areas in the eastern part of the Taiwan Straits, as per the report.
“Six major areas around the island have been selected for this actual combat exercise, and during this period, relevant ships and aircraft should not enter the relevant waters and airspaces,” it added.
China’s drills on one of the busiest international waterways and aviation routes are “irresponsible, illegitimate behavior,” Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said.
“The Ministry of National Defence stresses that it will uphold the principle of preparing for war without seeking war, and with an attitude of not escalating conflict and causing disputes,” it said in a statement, according to AFP.
Why It Matters: The drills come a day after U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visited Taiwan, where Beijing claims sovereignty, and angered the Chinese government.
The self-ruled island reiterated that the drills violate United Nations rules, invade Taiwan’s territorial space, and directly challenge free air and sea navigation.
Meanwhile, for the second time since Pelosi’s visit, a Taiwan cabinet spokesman said the websites of the defense ministry, the foreign ministry, and the presidential office had been hacked.
Image and article originally from www.benzinga.com. Read the original article here.