“The US will fly, sail, and operate within Taiwan Strait”: US Army
In escalating rhetoric, the US army affirms that it “will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows including within the Taiwan Strait.”
The US military said Tuesday that last week's flight of a US Navy warplane through the Taiwan Strait demonstrated the US commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.
The remarks came shortly after the Chinese army relayed its refusal to Washington regarding the flight of a US military plane, the P-8A Poseidon, over the Taiwan Strait, stressing that the Eastern Theater Command was always on high alert to protect national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
In a statement, the US Indo-Pacific Command said that “US Navy vessels and aircraft routinely interact with foreign warships and aircraft while operating throughout the region."
"All interactions with foreign military forces during the transit were consistent with international norms and did not impact the operation," it said.
"The United States will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows including within the Taiwan Strait. The aircraft's transit of the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the United States' commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific," it added.
US warplanes periodically conduct flights over Taiwan in an attempt to provoke Beijing, as China views Taiwan and the surrounding waters as its territory.
It is worth noting Beijing has been particularly unhappy with US support for Taiwan and its latest announcement by President Joe Biden, which offered the island military support under the Taiwan Relations Act and signaled a change in American policy towards its “strategic ambiguity” over Taiwan.
This is happening at a time when the Indo-Pacific region is witnessing escalating tension between the Chinese and Taiwanese sides, fueled by the US mounting interventionism.
Read more: Cold War Parallels: China-Taiwan Tensions