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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

China's saber rattling on Taiwan in vain: defense minister

ROC Central News Agency

2018/05/19 14:15:43

Taipei, May 19 (CNA) China's continued saber rattling on Taiwan will not be successful, but instead will only trigger resentment among the people in Taiwan, Minister of National Defense Yen De-fa (嚴德發) said on Saturday.

"I don't know whether you feel the same as I do. I do believe that China's doing so will have almost no effect, but will only stir up resentment among Taiwan's people," Yen said at a forum organized by the Tamkang University on national security strategy to mark the second anniversary of President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) inauguration on Sunday.

Yen also pointed out that a constantly changing international situation posed risky challenges for Taiwan.

"The complex situation on the Korean Peninsula, in which the United States, Japan, China and Russia are also involved, will indirectly impact the situation across the Taiwan Strait," he said.

"In the disputed waters of the South China Sea, China's deployment of anti-ship and surface-to-air missile systems on the Fiery Cross Reef and Subi Reef has reflected its ambition in the region, posing a threat and challenge to Taiwan's security," Yen added.

In addition, China's removal of the two-term limit on the presidency will effectively allow its leader Xi Jinping (習近平) to remain in power for life and will make him a strongman able to freely exercise greater pressure on Taiwan, Yen said.

At a time when China has been stepping up its military intimidation toward Taiwan while offering more incentives to Taiwan's people, Taiwan is facing tremendously risky challenges amid Beijing's "carrot and stick" approach, he pointed out.

But as long as Taiwan upholds its core democratic values and due to its strategical location, Taiwan will win recognition from other countries in the region, he said.

"Taiwan's military is absolutely capable of defending this country while facing different challenges," he concluded.

(By Claudia Liu and Flor Wang)

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