Kremlin says Russia supports China's drills completed today in Taiwan
China has completed the 3-day-long military exercises around Taiwan, and the Kremlin says Beijing has the right to do so.
China's military on Monday said it had "successfully completed" drills around Taiwan, following the 3-day war games circling the self-ruled island which Beijing considers as its own territory.
"From April 8 to 10, the Eastern Theatre Command of the Chinese PLA successfully completed various tasks for the war-preparedness patrol around Taiwan island and the 'Joint Sword' exercise, and comprehensively tested the integrated joint combat ability of multiple military branches under actual combat conditions," the Eastern Command said in a social media post.
The Kremlin announced today its support for China's drills, saying that the country had a "sovereign right" to respond to what Russia called "provocative" moves.
"We have witnessed multiple acts that were provocative in their character towards the Chinese People's Republic," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
"China has the sovereign right to respond to these provocative acts, including with military maneuvers, in strict accordance with international law," Peskov added.
China launched April 8 military drills around Taiwan in a stern warning to the Taiwanese government following a meeting between the island's leader and the US House speaker.
As part of the 3-day Operation "United Sharp Sword", Chinese jets and warships simulated strikes on Taiwan on the second day of the military drills.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning relayed Beijing's opposition to the official contacts between the US and Taiwan as she called on the US to halt developments with Taiwan and reiterated China's willingness to take "strong and resolute measures" to defend the country's sovereignty.
China sent planes, ships, and personnel into “the maritime areas and air space of the Taiwan strait, off the northern and southern coasts of the island, and to the island’s east.”
The drills were swiftly denounced by Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen Tsai, who pledged to work with "the US and other like-minded countries" against "continued authoritarian expansionism."
Taiwan's Defense Ministry reported that it had detected 11 Chinese warships and 59 aircraft around the island on Monday.
Former Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou said on Friday after his visit to China that the island will have to choose between "peace and war.”
On its account, China said planes "carrying live ammunition" conducted "simulated strikes" near Taiwan, stressing that "sealing off" Taiwan is simulated in the drills.
McCarthy was planning on visiting Taipei himself rather than receiving Tsai in California. But the decision to change the plan came to allegedly avoid escalation with China.
Tsai, who was on an official visit to Latin America, made two stopovers in the US during which she met with house speaker McCarthy and other legislators.
The announcement regarding the drills comes a day after Chinese warships patrolled near Taiwan for the second consecutive day.
Earlier today, China strongly decried on Monday the "illegal" intrusion of a US warship into waters it claims in the South China Sea shortly after the US Navy said its guided-missile destroyer the USS Milius had "sailed through the area."