Beijing [China], September 18 (ANI): The People's Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Theater Command on Saturday said it has dispatched naval and air forces to conduct joint patrols and combat exercises in the waters and airspace southwest of Taiwan.
This comes after a US warship transited the Taiwan Straits. On Friday, the US 7th fleet released a statement saying a US warship, - the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Barry - sailed through the 180-kilometre-wide waterway.
The Taiwan Strait is a channel separating the island of Taiwan and continental Asia. The strait is in international waters, however, China claims Taiwan as its own territory and regards the US Navy's presence in the area as a show of support for the island's democratic government, Global Times reported.
PLA Eastern Theater Command Spokesperson Senior Colonel Shi Yi said on Saturday that the PLA has organized troops to follow, supervise and monitor the US ship throughout its passage in the Taiwan Straits. These frequent provocations fully prove that the US is undermining the peace and stability of the Taiwan Straits, and creating risks in the region.
"The troops of the command theatre remain on high alert all the time, and will firmly safeguard the security of national sovereignty and the peace and stability of the region," Shi said in a statement released by the PLA Eastern Theater Command. (ANI)