After 13 Chinese jets recently breached Taiwan airspace, Chinese authorities responded by saying “No One & No Force” could stop it from taking Taiwan if it wanted to.
With an eye on the situation in Ukraine, China issued another warning over the weekend, this one addressed straight at the United States as well as its important regional partners like Australia, warning that any country that militarily supports Taiwan will face “the worst consequences.”
According to China’s Ministry of National Defense, “no one and no force” will ever be able to stop the Chinese military from bringing Taiwan under Beijing’s rule if it so wants. According to Sky News, “The tirade was delivered a day after Chinese President Xi Jinping engaged in diplomatic talks with Australia in an attempt to repair international relations.” And, of course, there’s the issue of Russia’s war in Ukraine, as well as the subject of Western-led sanctions from Beijing’s perspective. ..
The comment was made in response to Australia’s defence minister, Peter Dutton, declaring that his country will do “whatever we can” to stop Chinese aggression toward Taiwan. It also comes after Taiwan recently approved an additional $8.6 billion in military spending over the next five years. Much of the money will apparently go toward improving the island’s missile defences.
On Monday, 13 Chinese PLA aircraft crossed Taiwan’s air defence identification zone, which has been a weekly event – and virtually daily occurrence – at this point.
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But as Reuters underlines, “Taiwan is currently in a heighten state of alert due to fears China could use Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to make a similar military move on the island, though Taipei’s government has not reported any unusual Chinese movements.”
In reaction to such PLA aerial manoeuvres near the island, Taiwan’s air force is often scrambled. During a “routine combat training mission,” a Taiwanese Mirage 2000 fighter plane fell into the sea on Monday.
According to information obtained from Taipei sources:
The solo pilot took off from Taitung Air Base at 10:18 Monday morning and reported a mechanical malfunction roughly an hour later, the Taiwan Air Force said in a statement. The pilot safely ejected some 10 nautical miles south of the base and was rescued.
Air force officials later told reporters that the country’s fleet of Mirage 2000 fighter jets would be grounded for inspections, Taiwan’s China News Agency reported.
It’s the second Taiwanese air force mishap this year, after an F-16V fighter went into the water during a routine drill in January. The pilot was reported dead in the previous incident, and 140 flights were temporarily grounded pending an inquiry.