(TotalConservative.com) – According to Taiwan’s Defense Ministry, a Chinese surveillance balloon and an group of military planes and ships were detected over the Taiwan Strait.
Thursday night, the balloon reportedly flew southwest of Keelung, a port city in the north, before continuing eastward and eventually vanishing, according to the ministry.
The role of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), a military branch of China’s governing Communist Party, in operating the balloon seemed to be subject to debate. It was called a “PRC’s balloon” by the ministry and a PLA observation balloon by the PLA.
There was a lack of further information, according to a representative from the Defense Ministry.
Reports show the Chinese government has been engaging in persistent air and naval exercises since President Biden enacted the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) in December 2022. Numerous robust proclamations supporting Taiwan were included in the new legislation, and it now looks like China is stepping up its efforts to threaten Taiwan’s sovereignty.
The balloon flight occurred just weeks before Taiwan’s presidential and legislative elections, raising concerns about Chinese interference. A representative from China’s foreign ministry said they weren’t aware of the event, and it wasn’t a diplomatic matter. China’s defense ministry remained silent.
In the South China Sea, for example, China has a massive maritime militia consisting of what seem to be fishing vessels acting under official instructions to enforce Beijing’s territorial claims. This is just one example of how the boundaries between civilian and military operations in China have long been blurred.
The ministry wasn’t clear on what steps were taken in response to Taiwan’s threat to shoot down the balloons. It indicated that the balloon was soaring at around 21,000 feet.
The three-week high-stakes drama began with the discovery of what was believed to be a Chinese surveillance balloon traversing the United States earlier this year. President Biden has since pledged stricter regulations to detect, track, and perhaps shoot down unidentified airborne objects.
The US downed the balloon with a missile after classifying it as a military craft. Investigators claimed to have retrieved high-tech monitoring gear. The Chinese government reacted strongly, claiming the incident resulted from a weather balloon going awry and describing the downing as a significant overreaction.
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