The United States has sent two warships through the Taiwan Strait in the first such operation this year, the Taiwanese Government said, as it increases the frequency of transits through the strategic waterway amid tensions with China.
US Pacific Fleet spokesperson Lieutenant Commander Tim Gorman told CNN USS McCampbell and USNS Water S Diehl “conducted a routine Taiwan Strait Transit” under international law.
The voyage risks further heightening tensions with China, which considers Taiwan its own and has not ruled out the use of force to bring the self-ruled island under its control.
Taiwan’s Defence Ministry said in a statement late on Thursday the ships were moving in a northerly direction and that their voyage was in accordance with regulations.
It said Taiwan closely monitored the operation to “ensure the security of the seas and regional stability”.
The move will likely be viewed in Taiwan as a sign of…
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