Taiwan detects 8 Chinese naval ships encircling it

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Taiwan’s Ministry of Defense (MND) detected the presence of Chinese naval ships around its vicinity on Tuesday. According to the defence ministry’s statement, eight Chinese naval vessels were spotted around the nation up until 6 am. In response, Taiwan sent naval ships and deployed coastal-based missile systems to monitor the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) activity, according to the MND.

https://x.com/MoNDefense/status/1792724785128235230

In a post on X, Taiwan’s MND said, “8 PLAN vessels operating around Taiwan were detected up until 6 a.m. (UTC+8) today. #ROCArmedForces has monitored the situation and responded accordingly. No flight path illustration is provided due to no PLA aircraft crossing the median line.” The Ministry of Defense in Taiwan had also noted 8 PLAN vessels operating around Taiwan on Monday.

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This development marks a concerning escalation in the tensions between Taiwan and China, which has long claimed sovereignty over the island, as per Taiwan News. The increased presence of Chinese military assets near Taiwan underscores the ongoing geopolitical tensions in the region. Taiwan has frequently raised concerns about China’s military activities and its ambitions to reunify Taiwan with the mainland, by force if necessary.

The median line of the Taiwan Strait served for decades as a tacit border between China and Taiwan, but China’s military has more freely sent aircraft, warships and drones across it since former United States House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan in August 2022. According to Taiwan News, so far this month, Taiwan has tracked Chinese military aircraft 247 times and naval vessels 114 times.

Since September 2020, China has increased its use of grey zone tactics by incrementally increasing the number of military aircraft and naval ships operating around Taiwan. Grey zone tactics are defined as “an effort or series of efforts beyond steady-state deterrence and assurance that attempts to achieve one’s security objectives without resort to direct and sizable use of force.”