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April 11, 2023, 06.03 PM

Also readUS Holds Drills in South China Sea Amid Tensions With China

China’s foreign ministry has sharply criticized meetings between US and Taiwanese officials. The Chinese Communist Party has said it wants to gain control of Taiwan, a democratic island, by 2027 and is prepared to use force, if necessary.

The Pentagon’s assistant to the secretary of defense for public affairs, Chris Meager, told reporters Monday that Beijing should not turn the Taiwanese leader’s visit to California into a “pretext to overreact.”

He said the US continues to keep open communication channels with the People’s Republic of China but so far, Beijing has declined requests for engagement with both Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley.

The USS Nimitz Carrier Strike Group and a Marine Amphibious Ready Group are currently in the region, and Meagher said they will continue to conduct routine operations there.

“We will not be deterred from operating safely and responsibly in the seas and skies of the western Pacific, consistent with international law,” he said Monday.

Source: VOA

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Source VOA News

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