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China will ramp up its military exercises around Taiwan well into this week after the island hosted a foreign head of state Monday
China has been holding live-fire drills surrounding Taiwan for nearly a week since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited the island. Taiwan hosted St. Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, who insisted on flying to the island despite China’s ongoing show-of-force, on Monday.
“Prime Minister Gonsalves has expressed in recent days that the Chinese military drills would not prevent him from visiting friends in Taiwan. These statements have deeply touched us,” Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen said in a welcoming ceremony.
Gonsalves ripped China as a “bully” in his own remarks. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is one of just over a dozen countries that has formal diplomatic ties with Taiwan.
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“As in our own hemisphere, the Western hemisphere, we do not like it and we do not support it when any powerful neighbor seeks to intimidate us or bully us,” Gonsalves said. “Wherever there are differences, we must settle them peacefully in a civilized manner.”
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China’s ramped-up drills come days after the country announced it would hold “regular” military exercises on the Taiwanese side of the Taiwan Strait.
Chines leader Xi Jinping’s regime was furious with Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, arguing it broke the U.S. One-China policy.
The policy states that the U.S. acknowledges, but does not condone, China’s claim of sovereignty over the Taiwan. It also states that the U.S. will not keep formal diplomatic ties with the island’s government.
While President Joe Biden’s administration had advised Pelosi not to take the trip, the U.S. has made no apologies for her visit.
The U.S. has urged China not to overreact, however. South Korean airlines canceled flights to Taiwan this weekend as a precaution given China’s extensive military drills.