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IPFS News Link • China

China Initiates Large Drills 'Surrounding' Taiwan As Warning To New President Lai

•, by Tyler Durden

PLA navy ships and aircraft are now reportedly "surrounding the island of Taiwan," according to state media and PLA statements. The drills are said to be ensuing in the Taiwan Strait as well as to the north, south and east of the island - and additionally near the disputed tiny islands of Kinmen, Matsu, Wuqiu, and Dongyin in the East China Sea.

"The Eastern Theater Command of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) started joint military drills surrounding the island of Taiwan from 7:45 a.m. Thursday (2345 GMT)," Xinhua news agency said.

Dubbed Joint Sword-2024A, the exercises will "focus on joint sea-air combat-readiness patrol, joint seizure of comprehensive battlefield control, and joint precision strikes on key targets" - according to military spokesman Li Xi.

The statement described that the drills "involve the patrol of vessels and planes closing in on areas around the island of Taiwan and integrated operations inside and outside the island chain to test the joint real combat capabilities of the forces of the command."

And ominously, Xinhua further cited the spokesman as saying the drills will serve as a "strong punishment for the separatist acts of 'Taiwan independence' forces and a stern warning against the interference and provocation by external forces."

Taiwan's new president Lai only on Tuesday called on China "to cease their political and military intimidations against Taiwan, and share with Taiwan the global responsibility of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, as well as the greater region, and to ensure the world is free from the fear of war." These were some of his first words spoken as president.