/Taiwan President Condemns China Drills as Irresponsible | Political news

Taiwan President Condemns China Drills as Irresponsible | Political news

Tsai Ing-wen says Beijing’s military exercises, which simulated an invasion, were a risk to peace and stability.

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen condemned China for its three days of military exercises around the autonomous island, saying they were irresponsible and a threat to regional stability.

Beijing wrapped up its war games on Monday, which simulated attacks on the territory of 23 million people.

The drills began after Tsai returned home from a visit to Central America, during which she stopped twice in the United States and held a high-level meeting with the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy. .

Tsai, portrayed as a “separatist” by China, said visits to friendly countries were a “long-term practice” and expected by the people of Taiwan.

“China uses this to launch military exercises, causing instability in Taiwan and the region. This is not a responsible attitude for a major country in the region,” she wrote on her Facebook page Monday night.

Beijing considers Taiwan part of China and does not rule out the use of force to gain control of the island.

The latest drills simulated attacks in Taiwan and a state media report said dozens of planes had practiced an “air blockade”.

The exercise “comprehensively tested the integrated joint combat capability of multiple military branches under actual combat conditions,” the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Eastern Command said in a statement.

The drills did not appear to be on the same scale as the military activity that followed then-US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan in August last year, but they also drew a rebuke from Japan.

Its southernmost islands lie close to Taiwan, while it is also home to a major US airbase on Okinawa.

Japanese Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada described the drills as “intimidation training” to seize maritime and air control around the island, the Reuters news agency reported. China appeared to have shown an “uncompromising attitude” on Taiwan issues through the drills, Hamada added.

Beijing has increased pressure on Taiwan since Tsai was first elected president in 2016.

His visit to Central America included trips to Guatemala and Belize, Taipei’s remaining formal allies in the region after Honduras announced last month that it would switch allegiance to Beijing.

Tsai, who says it is up to the people of Taiwan to decide their future, previously accused Beijing of “dollar diplomacy” with the number of Taiwan’s formal allies reduced to 13, from 22 when she took office.

Despite that, the island’s government maintains strong informal ties with many governments and has welcomed a stream of lawmakers from countries including the United States, the United Kingdom and the Czech Republic.

In 2021, it opened a de facto embassy in Lithuania, its first in Europe in 18 years, drawing the ire of Beijing.