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Tensions in Indo-Pacific: US military jet flies over Taiwan Strait, China deploys warplanes

Tensions in Indo-Pacific: US military jet flies over Taiwan Strait, China deploys warplanes

A P-8A Poseidon flies over the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt in the Pacific Ocean (US Navy/REUTERS/File Photo)

The US Seventh Fleet said a P-8A Poseidon of the Navy flew across the Taiwan Strait Wednesday, a day later for security chiefs America And China held their first talks since November 2022 in a bid to ease regional tensions.

The patrol and reconnaissance aircraft “crossed the Taiwan Strait in international airspace,” the 7th Fleet said in a news release.

“By operating within the Taiwan Strait in accordance with international law, the United States protects the rights and freedoms of navigation of all nations. Air traffic through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates America's commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific. The U.S. military flies, travels, and operates wherever international law allows,” the statement said.

The important strait is 160 kilometers Separates China from the vast and autonomous island. Although it is in international waters, China Considers that foreign military aircraft and ships pass through it challenge to its sovereignty.

China claims the island of Taiwan Despite US military support for the island, it threatens to defend it by force if necessary.

China sent fighter jets “Track US Airline” and acted “in accordance with laws and regulations,” Colonel Li Xi, a spokesman for the Chinese People's Liberation Army's Eastern Theater Command, said in a statement posted on the command's official Weibo social media site.

“Theater troops are on high alert at all times We must resolutely safeguard national sovereignty and security, as well as regional peace and stability,” Li said.

China routinely issues strong protests and enforces its defenses when military ships and aircraft pass through the strait, particularly US ships.

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China too Continues to send warships and warplanes to the strait and to other areas around the island Remove Taiwan's defenses And try Threatening its 23 million peopleIt strongly supports its procedural independence.

Barricades prevent a beach landing in Kinmen, Taiwan (REUTERS/Ann Wang/file), with the Chinese city of Xiamen in the background.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin spoke with Chinese Defense Secretary Admiral Dong Jun on Tuesday.In a last-ditch effort by America Communication with the Chinese military should be improved and reduce the chances of a conflict in the region.

This is the first time Austin has spoken with Dong and the first time he has spoken at length with a Chinese representative since November 2022. The call came more than an hour before US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken was due to travel. China for talks this month.

Military contacts were suspended in August 2022When Beijing stopped all such communications after the then House of Representatives Speaker's visit to Taiwan, Nancy Pelosi. China responded by launching missiles at Taiwan and mounting increased military exercises, including what appeared to be a rehearsed naval and aerial blockade of the island.

(With information from AP)