China’s most extensive military exercises around Taiwan ended on Sunday, in response to the visit of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the island.
Pelosi, who holds the third highest office in the US, angered China with her visit to Taiwan. She is the highest-ranking US official to visit the island in 25 years.
Beijing responded to this move by suspending a series of bilateral talks and partnerships, especially in the field of climate change and defence.
The Chinese military also launched the largest military exercises in its history, mobilizing aircraft, warships and ballistic missiles in the context of what analysts considered a simulation of the blockade and invasion of Taiwan.
These exercises ended at noon on Sunday, even though Beijing announced that new exercises with “live ammunition” will be held until the fifteenth of August in the Yellow Sea separating China and the Korean Peninsula.
It stressed that the purpose of these exercises is to “test firepower in the field and long-range air strikes”.
The Taiwanese authorities have spotted twenty aircraft of the communist regime and 14 ships participating in joint air-sea exercises in the vicinity of Taiwan, the defence ministry said in a statement.
The middle line drawn by the US during the Cold War in the middle of the Taiwan Strait, which separates the island from mainland China, has never been recognized by Beijing.
In a sign of how close it is to the coast of Taiwan, the Chinese military on Saturday published a photo taken by one of its military ships, it says, showing a building of the Taiwanese navy just a few hundred meters away.
In recent days, Taipei has non-stop condemned the exercises and called on Beijing to “immediately cease escalation and carry out provocative actions aimed at intimidating the Taiwanese people”.