In the wake of rising tensions across the Taiwan Strait, Taiwanese Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng stated on Thursday that the island would not launch a war with China.
Taiwan's Defense Minister Released a Statement
In a recently published article in MSN News, Taiwan will not initiate a conflict with China but would defend itself "full on," Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng warned on Thursday amid heightened tensions across the Taiwan Strait that have alarmed the international community.
Taiwan, a major semiconductor manufacturer, has said repeatedly that it would defend itself if attacked but will not "move rashly" and prefers to maintain the status quo with China. Chiu told a parliamentary committee that the Republic of China would not initiate or start a war, but that if there are any moves, the enemy will be met full on.
Tensions Between Taiwan and China
Military tensions with China, which claims Taiwan as its own territory, are at an all-time high, according to Chiu, who also predicted that by 2025, China would be capable of launching a "full-scale" invasion, according to a report published in Channel News Asia.
He was speaking after China launched four days of mass air force incursions into Taiwan's air defense identification zone, beginning on October 1, as part of a pattern of what Taipei perceives as increased military intimidation by Beijing.
There have been no shots fired, and Chinese aircraft have remained far clear of Taiwanese airspace, focusing their activities in the southwestern part of Taiwan's air defense zone. In a briefing to parliament before Chiu's appearance before legislators, the ministry warned China that if its troops went too near to the island, it would face harsh retaliation.
In a published article in The Straits Times, Chiu agreed with a lawmaker's assessment that China's capabilities are restricted by its lack of mid-air refueling capability, which means it only has H-6 bombers and Y-8 anti-submarine and reconnaissance aircraft that have flown into the Bashi Channel, which divides Taiwan and the Philippines.
According to charts put out by Chiu's ministry, Chinese fighters have stayed considerably closer to China's shore. Their goals, he added, are to put pressure on Taiwan on the one hand and to show the rest of the world that they have the capacity to frighten away and block foreign armed forces from becoming involved on the other.
China's Washington Embassy Complains to the U.S.
On Wednesday, China's Washington embassy claimed it had protested to the US government about a meeting between Taiwan's de facto ambassador and top US diplomats, as well as Taiwan's army chief, Hsu Yen-visit pu to the US, according to a report published in Business Times.
It is said that the United States should not dream about gaining China's assistance and cooperation while ignoring China's red line on Taiwan.
According to Taiwan's official Central News Agency, Chiu said earlier this week that Hsu was not in the United States on a covert trip, but rather as part of routine yearly exchanges.