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Taipei, Feb. 10 (CNA) The reported passage in the coming days of a mainland Chinese warship through the Taiwan Strait is an attempt at psychologically intimidating Taiwan, said an official in charge of mainland affairs on Thursday.

Lin Chong-pin, vice chairman of the cabinet-level Mainland Affairs Council, the highest government agency charting Taiwan's policy toward the mainland, however, pointed out that he does not think the passage of the mainland Chinese naval vessel through the strait has anything to do with Taiwan's presidential election scheduled for March 18.

The foreign media has reported that a new Russian-built Sovremenney-class destroyer is slated to sail through the Taiwan Strait in the early morning hours on Saturday on its way from Saint-Petersburg, where it departed on Dec. 25, to a mainland Chinese naval base in the southeastern province of Zejian.

The destroyer will perform tests during its passage through the strait in an attempt to increase psychological pressure on Taiwan, according to the reports.

Stressing that they have been closely monitoring all mainland Chinese military movements, ROC military authorities predicted that the Sovremenney-class destroyer will sail through the west side of the strait as other PRC naval ships have in the past, using the cover of darkness to prevent the ROC military from taking photos and collecting information. (By Flor Wang)

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