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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

China's expanding military capabilities pose threat to Taiwan: report

Central News Agency

2012/10/18 22:16:41

Taipei, Oct. 18 (CNA) China's expanding military transportation capabilities have become increasingly threatening to Taiwan, the U.S.-based Defense News said in a report earlier this week.

Citing Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense, the Defense News said China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) is likely to send five to six divisions to Taiwan in the event of an offensive, and that all of the PLA's large amphibious transportation vessels and most new large civil ferries were built after 2006.

In addition, China's navy has launched the third type of its 28,000-ton 071-based dock landing ship, which can transport 500-800 sailors and 15-20 amphibious assault vehicles, said the Oct. 15 report, which added that China plans to build three more of the dock landing ships.

Moreover, the PLA also plans to add three to six landing helicopter docks to its fleet, which will further strengthen its navy's dispatch capability, the report said.

The report also pointed out that instances of transportation by large ferries for military purposes now triple those of the Chinese navy's regular amphibious vessels, adding that China organized many exercises using these civil ships and roll-on/roll-off ships.

It concluded the Chinese armed forces' growing dispatch capabilities pose a potential threat not only to Taiwan but also other neighboring countries, including Japan, with which it has recently had a territorial sovereignty dispute.

However, Chinese state-media Global Times refuted the Defense News report, saying that Western nations have been working to develop their air and sea dispatch capabilities.

They have just completed large-scale construction and are focusing on the "minor details," the Chinese report said.

(By Charles Kang and Kendra Lin)

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