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US-Taiwan: China starts military exercise

Dongfeng ballistic missiles launched today

Following a 24-hour visit to Taiwan by US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, China started one of the largest ever inter-force military exercises around the island. According to reports, the maritime and air military maneuvers will last four days and will take place just 12 miles off the coast of Taipei, with real projectiles being launched. 

"There is no justification for using a visit as a pretext for military activities in the Taiwan Strait. It is normal and routine for lawmakers from our countries to carry out international missions". On "encourages all parties to remain calm, exercise restraint and act with transparency", said European Union High Representative for Foreign Policy Josep Borrell

The Chinese exercise is a retaliation, Beijing points out, following the overflight of 27 Chinese military aircraft over Taiwan's airspace and, Taipei reports, comes at the same time as the launch today of several Dongfeng ballistic missiles that reportedly took place at 7:46 am Italian time. Meanwhile, the aircraft carrier USS "Ronald Reagan" is headed into the ocean area that includes waters south-east of Taiwan.

Gic - 1246252

AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency