BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:15 A.M.) – Taiwan revealed that it sent elements of its navy and air forces on Sunday to a major waterway, as a Chinese aircraft carrier passed through the Taiwan Strait, a day after a US warship sailed in the waterway.
The Taiwanese Defense Ministry announced that the Chinese aircraft carrier “Shandong”, which entered service nearly a year ago, set sail from Dalian Port in northern China on Thursday, accompanied by four warships.
They noted that the aircraft carrier group continued to move south after passing through the Taiwan Strait on Sunday, stressing that Taipei had sent six warships and eight planes to “guard” and monitor the movements of Chinese ships.
The Chinese Ministry of Defense did not respond to a request for comment.
This is not the first time that a Chinese aircraft carrier has sailed near Taiwan, but it comes at a time of escalating tension between Taipei and Beijing, which considers the island part of its territory.
Taipei complains about the permanent Chinese military activity, including the regular flights of the Chinese Air Force near the island, while Beijing says that such exercises are aimed at protecting its sovereignty.