China doubles its threats against Taiwan with military exercises around the island: “They will be left with broken heads and bleeding”

China threatened Taiwan with “break their heads” and “bloodshed”

China on Thursday began two-day military exercises “around the island of Taiwan” as “severe punishment” for “separatist acts” in this region after the inauguration of a new president hated by Beijing.

The communist authorities considered him a “dangerous separatist.” Lai Ching T He took office Monday as president with a speech in which he celebrated democracy in Taiwan and urged China to do so “Stop their political and military intimidation.”

China, which has claimed sovereignty over the island under separate rule since 1949 and has never ruled out using force to control it, denounced his words as a “recognition of independence.”

The Chinese People's Liberation Army announced that the maneuvers began early Thursday, deploying military aircraft and ships “around the island of Taiwan” to test its combat capabilities.

It serves as a “dangerous warning” directed to the “independence supporters” of the island who… They'll end up “bloody”A Chinese diplomatic spokesman said Wang Wenbin.

Military ships in Taiwan (Reuters/Ann Wang)

The Taiwanese authorities responded immediately and mobilized their naval, air and ground forces.

“We will continue to defend the values ​​of freedom and democracy.”President Lai confirmed. “I will stay on the front lines with our brothers and sisters in the military to defend national security together.”he added.

In coordination with the military, the Taiwan Coast Guard deployed its fleet to “monitor movements in the surrounding maritime waters” and defend “the country’s sovereignty and security with a resolute stance.”

Taiwan deployed four fighter aircraft from the Hsinchu base, about 60 kilometers southwest of the country Taipei.

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In photos posted by the Taiwanese Coast Guard on social media, officers appear urging Chinese ships, via a loudspeaker, to leave the site.

“Your movements affect the order and security of our country. Turn around and leave our waters as soon as possible.”“He points to one of them.

The official Chinese news agency, Xinhua, reported that the maneuvers “are taking place in the Taiwan Strait, north, south and east of the island of Taiwan.”

According to Col I have nothingThe army spokesman said that the maneuvers represent “a strong punishment for the separatist actions of the 'Taiwan independence' forces and a serious warning against interference and provocation by external forces.” He added that with them, “true joint combat capabilities will be put to the test.”

For his part, Zhang Qi, a professor at the National Defense University in Beijing, commented on state television CCTV that the exercises seek to “impose an economic blockade on the island” and “stifle” the port of Kaohsiung, which receives great attention. Strategy for Taiwan.

Taiwan President Lai Ching-tei with military personnel during his visit to a camp in Taoyuan, Taiwan, May 23, 2024. Photograph: An Wang - Reuters.
Taiwan President Lai Ching-tei with military personnel during his visit to a camp in Taoyuan, Taiwan, May 23, 2024. Photograph: An Wang – Reuters.

Through this blockade, “Taiwan's vital energy imports” could be cut off and “impede the support provided by some US allies to 'Taiwan independence' forces,” according to the academic.

Relations between Beijing and Taipei have deteriorated significantly since the arrival to power in 2016 of Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, who, like her successor Lai, is a staunch defender of the island's democratic model.

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Beijing has increased its military, diplomatic and economic pressure on this island with a population of 23 million, which, although it barely enjoys international recognition, has its own government, army and currency.

“China clearly feels it needs to send a very strong message to Lai and anyone who supports him.”“, wrote analyst Bill Bishop in his influential newsletter Sinocism.

“We were expecting something like this, frankly,” admitted the US Army's deputy commander in the region, Lieutenant General Stephen Sklinka, during an event in Canberra. “It's worrying,” he added.

In August, China launched military exercises in response to Lai, then Vice President, visiting the United States amid a trip to Paraguay.

Months earlier, in April, Chinese armed forces pretended to besiege the island after Tsai met in California with then-US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.

In 2022, China conducted massive military exercises in the region after McCarthy's predecessor, Nancy Pelosiwill visit Taiwan.

Events in this area could have important economic consequences, as 70% of the world's semiconductor production comes from Taiwan and more than 50% of shipping containers transit the strait that separates this island from mainland China.

(Information from Agence France-Presse)

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