US reports ‘more aggressive’ aircraft intercepts by China
According to US Commander-in-Chief Mark Milley, China has become “noticeably more aggressive” in recent years, and its actions could threaten key US allies in the
Chinese Chengdu J-20 fighters
China behind the last few years has become “more aggressive” in intercepting US military aircraft and conducting unsafe air maneuvers near the borders of American allies. This was stated in an interview for the Financial Times by the commander of the US military, Mark Milley.
“The number of Chinese intercepts at sea and in the air has increased significantly in five years,”— declared the general.
According to him, the Chinese military has become “noticeably more aggressive” and their actions could threaten the security of Canada, Australia, Japan and other US partners.
At the same time, Milley refused to provide specific data on the total number of incidents, but explained that the volume of unsafe intercepts increased “in equal proportion.”
According to the FT, intercepts— just one of the many contentious issues in “stretched relations” between the US and China, so US President Joe Biden intends to hold telephone conversations with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jiping in the coming days.
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Tension between China and the US has persisted for several years. Even under the presidency of Donald Trump, Washington increased the sanctions pressure on Beijing, including because of the Uyghur and Taiwan issues.
The United States has repeatedly stressed that it does not support Taiwan independence. Biden said that the decision on this issue depends on the island itself. At the same time, at the end of May, he stated that Washington was ready for a military response to the possible use of force by China against Taiwan.
In turn, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian stated that Beijing strongly opposes any form of official interaction between USA and Taiwan. In addition, China demanded that the United States withdraw $108 million in military aid to Taiwan announced by the State Department last week.
Taiwan announced its secession from China in 1949, during the civil war. Beijing does not recognize the independence of the island and considers it its province.
The administrative status of the region has not been settled. Washington does not have diplomatic relations with the Taiwan authorities, but since 1979 a law has been in force according to which the United States can supply weapons to the region to protect it. At the same time, Washington adheres to the “one China” policy.