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China won't attack in Tsai's term, says Taiwan's official

News Agencies | Updated on: 5 November 2021, 7:21 IST

Taiwan's National Security Bureau chief Chen Ming-tong on Thursday said that China will not try to attack the nation's remote islands while President Tsai Ing-wen is in office.

Taiwan's intelligence chief made the remark during a question-and-answer session at the Taiwanese legislature, reported NHK World.

Chen ruled out the possibility of a China-Taiwan armed clash elsewhere during her term.

Regarding the possibility of China's military attack on Taiwan, Chen said possible scenarios include China's occupation of remote islands, blockade of the sea and a saturation attack that overwhelms Taiwan's defense capabilities, reported NHK World.

Chen was specifically asked about media reports saying that the Chinese military may be preparing an attack on the Pratas Islands.

Taiwan effectively controls the islands, which are located in the South China Sea. Beijing claims full sovereignty over Taiwan despite the island's self-governance for over seven decades. Meanwhile, Taipei continues to counter the Chinese aggression by increasing strategic ties with democracies including the US.

Chen suggested that based on intelligence activities, his bureau has concluded that Beijing is not planning such an attack during Tsai's presidency, which is set to last until May 2024. He said this issue has already been studied inside China, reported NHK World.

However, he admitted that the tension across the Taiwan Strait is rising compared to before. He stressed that any unplanned incidents must be prevented.


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First published: 5 November 2021, 7:21 IST