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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

China would invade Taiwan in certain circumstances: MND report

Central News Agency

2015/08/31 18:49:59

Taipei, Aug. 31 (CNA) Judging from China's military investment and modernization in recent years, China would probably invade Taiwan under certain circumstances, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) said in a report submitted to the Legislative Yuan on Monday.

In its 2015 report on China's military power, the MND assessed that China might invade Taiwan in some critical situations, which could include a declaration of Taiwan independence or moves by the country toward de-jure independence. Other scenarios also include massive civil unrest, Taiwan obtaining nuclear weapons, or foreign troops being deployed in Taiwan.

Delays by Taiwan over cross-Taiwan Strait talks on peaceful unification or foreign intervention in Taiwan's internal affairs could also prompt China to invade Taiwan, the MND assessed.

Despite detente across the strait in recent years, Beijing has never given up the idea of using force to achieve Taiwan's unification with China, evidenced in that the People's Liberation Army conducted a series of exercises at Zhurihe Training Base in Inner Mongolia in July, using replicas of Taiwan's Presidential Office and other key hubs as targets, it pointed out.

If China resorts to military means against Taiwan at the current stage, it would probably resort to joint military operations to attack Taiwan or use a joint blockade strategy to intimidate Taiwan, the MND contended, stressing that it might also invade Taiwan proper in certain contingencies if it deemed it necessary.

According to the MND report, China's military spending has risen to 911.4 billion Chinese yuan (US$142.85 billion) in 2015, accounting for 1.34 percent of its GDP and marking a 10 percent increase year-on-year. The amount is the highest in Asia and the second-highest in the world, behind only the United States, it noted.

China's real military spending would be twice or triple that amount, making up 4 percent of its GDP -- on par with Russia and the United States -- if hidden costs are included, the MND report said.

As a result of such huge spending, the imbalance in military strength across the strait has sharply widened while China has narrowed its difference with the U.S.

(By S.H. Lu and Flor Wang)

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