China military preparing capability to control Taiwan by 2020: MND
ROC Central News Agency
Taipei, Oct. 7 (CNA) China plans to enhance its combat capabilities to a level sufficient to mount a full attack against Taiwan by 2020, showing that its military threat to Taiwan has not diminished, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) has concluded in a report.
First published in 1992, the 12th National Defense Report says that China has developed and deployed various types of new high-end weapons and has developed cyber attack and defense technologies.
It also has plans to ramp up its combat capabilities needed to launch an all-out attack on Taiwan by 2020, the report says.
The People's Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force 'has stationed a large number of advanced aircraft within unrefueled range of Taiwan, providing them with a significant capability to conduct air superiority and ground operations against Taiwan,' the report says.
'A number of long-range air defense systems provide strong layers of defense against a counterattack in mainland China,' it adds.
Cheng Yun-peng, director-general of the MND's Department of Strategic Planning, noted that the 2020 timeframe is a rough estimate, but said China was making major advances in its arsenal.
China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, has already been delivered to the PLA Navy for testing.
Beijing is also building two large amphibious assault ships similar to the Landing Helicopter Assault ships currently used by the U.S. Navy and the Type 726 Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC), showing that China has made great progress in building up its amphibious assault abilities.
The report says that 'combined operations' remains the PLA's basic combat model and that its military modernization is aimed at developing a credible deterrent against U.S. intervention in a possible conflict with Taiwan.
China has still not promised to renounce the use of force against Taiwan, the report says, and the MND's national defense policy is based on a 'Solid as Bedrock' approach for homeland defense and the concept of asymmetric warfare.
Currently, Taiwan's homemade Hsiung Feng III anti-ship missiles developed by the Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology (CSIST) have the ability to counter the threat of Chinese amphibious and aircraft carrier attacks, according to Cheng.
The MND's 12th National Defense Report contains chapters on 'Strategic Environment,' 'All-out National Defense,' 'General Plan of National Defense,' and 'National Defense Capabilities' and hopes to acquaint the public with the concept of national defense and its achievements, the military said in a statement.
(By Claudia Liu and Y.L. Kao)
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