BEIJING – The Chinese Ministry of National Defense said on Thursday that patrols by Chinese fighter jets close to the island of Taiwan, separated unilaterally from the Chinese communist regime, will continue in the future and be regularized, despite the Taiwanese pro-independence government’s protests.
“Taiwan is part of China and the naval and air force trainings conducted by armed forces are routine activities, we will continue to carry out these trainings as planned, and will be gradually regularized,” said ministry spokesperson Ren Guoqiang at a press conference.
The armies “have no intention of compromising the security of the region in any way, on the contrary, the development of China’s armed forces is a boost for peace and stability in the region,” he added.
This week, the Taiwanese Ministry of National Defense released an annual report that said that the frequent military drills by China close to the island, which have intensified in the last month, are an enormous threat to its security.
The report said that China has carried out at least 20 exercises with military aircraft in the surroundings of Taiwan and Japan this year, with 10 taking place after the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in October.
Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen told her country’s armed forces on Thursday to remain alert given the growing Chinese military activity close to the island, and ensure national and regional security.
Taiwanese military experts say that the Chinese aerial missions seek to compile information regarding the defenses of the island and its capability to react to Chinese aerial intrusions.
The Chinese spokesperson defended the incursions, saying that they will contribute more positive energy to maintaining world peace and stability.
The relations between China and Taiwan are at a low point after Tsai’s Democratic Progressive Party’s accession to power in 2016.
The frequent aerial incursions, the recent sentencing in China of Taiwanese pro-democracy activist Lee Ming-che, and the extraditions by Spain of 121 alleged criminals from Taiwan to China have worsened ties between the two entities.