According to reports from Taiwan, a Chinese aircraft carrier has sailed into the Taiwan Defense Identification Zone.
Although Taiwan’s defense ministry advises people to stay calm, China has never renounced the use of military force to take the island back.
The Soviet-built aircraft carrier, Liaoning, had been in Hong Kong for celebrations marking the 20th anniversary of the territory’s return to Chinese rule from Britain.
It was the fourth time in recent months that the Liaoning had entered waters near Taiwan. Beijing, however, claimed that the carrier was just conducting routine drills.
On a previous intrusion, earlier this month, jets were scrambled from Taiwan to shadow the carrier as it made its way to Hong Kong.
Fox News reported that China has demonstrated that it is “increasingly willing to challenge actions by the U.S. – long the region’s pre-eminent military power – especially in the South China Sea, which China claims virtually in its entirety.”
China’s navy is expanding. Experts are predicting that China will have a total of 265-273 warships, submarines and logistics vessels by 2020. In comparison, the U.S. Navy currently has 275 deployable battle force ships.
The Federalist Papers Project reports:
Reuters reports that the Taiwanese government says a Chinese aircraft carrier has entered the nation’s defense identification zone.
The Taiwanese defense ministry says people should not be alarmed by the development, but Reuters’ report notes that “China has never renounced the use of force to bring Taiwan, which China considers a wayward province, under its control,” so it’s hard not to be suspicious about the intrusion.