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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Taiwan to conduct annual war games in July and September

ROC Central News Agency

06/09/2020 03:26 PM

Taipei, June 9 (CNA) Taiwan's annual Han Kuang exercises (漢光演習) will be conducted in July and September and will test the country's asymmetric capabilities to ward off hostile forces at sea and along its beaches, the Ministry of National Defense said Tuesday.

This year's Han Kuang live-fire drill will take place July 13-17 and the computer-assisted tabletop training is scheduled for September 14-18, Lin Wen-huang (林文皇), head of the MND's operations and planning office, said at a press briefing.

The exercises will follow the Central Epidemic Command Center's (CECC's) protocols for COVID-19, such as wearing face masks while indoors and maintaining social distancing while outdoors, Lin said.

The annual Han Kuang exercises, first held in 1984, test the capabilities of all three branches of Taiwan's military -- the Army, Navy and Air Force -- in repelling a potential invasion from China.

The live-fire drills will be conducted in Taiwan's airspace, territorial waters and outlying islands. Among the activities, an anti-beach landing drill on July 16 at Jianan Beach in Taichung will be open to the media, according to Lin.

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) will be invited to observe the drill, Lin said, but whether she attends will depend on the Presidential Office's arrangements.

Other joint sea-air exercises will take place off Taiwan's southeastern coast, Lin said.

This year's Han Kuang exercises will primarily focus on testing Taiwan's defense strategies, which involve maintaining combat capabilities, pursuing decisive victory in coastal zones and subduing enemies in beach areas, according to a separate MND press release.

They will also test the ability to mobilize Taiwan's reserve forces, especially amid the COVID-19 outbreak, and the ability to activate backup command centers if the main command and control systems are paralyzed by the enemy, the MND said.

Meanwhile, the MND also announced the annual Wan An air raid drill (萬安演習) will be held across Taiwan and its islands on July 14 from 1:30 p.m. to 2 p.m.

(By Emerson Lim)

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