Thu, Jan 10, 2019 - Page 1 News List

Threat of force elicits combat drill response

READINESS:’We want to assure citizens that the military is constantly improving its combat preparedness and stands ready to fight,’ a military spokesman said

Staff writer, with CNA

Amphibious commandos take part in a beach operation in Kinmen County on June 5 last year during the annual Han Kuang live-fire exercises.

Photo: Wu Cheng-ting, Taipei Times

The Ministry of National Defense yesterday — a week after Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) reasserted China’s right to use force against Taiwan — made public this year’s schedule of combat drills designed to boost the military’s readiness.

The annual exercises are divided into four components, Operations and Planning Division head Major General Yeh Kuo-hui (葉國輝) said.

A month of combat readiness training is to be held in the first quarter, the month-long Han Kuang live-fire exercise in the second quarter, joint anti-landing operations in the third quarter and joint anti-airborne exercises in the fourth quarter, Yeh said, without giving a more detailed timetable.

The drills and training routines would incorporate newly adopted tactics for defending against a possible Chinese invasion, Yeh said.

Over the past few decades, the armed forces made beach invasions the focal point of any defensive strategy, but when President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) took office in May 2016, the plan for repelling a possible attack was broadened to include the outer perimeter of the nation’s coastal areas.

The military’s combat exercise schedule for this year was announced a week after Xi on Wednesday last week reissued a warning to Taiwan in an address marking the 40th anniversary of China’s “Message to Compatriots in Taiwan.”

In his speech, Xi said that China is willing to talk with any party in Taiwan to push forward the process of peaceful unification on the basis of the “one China” principle.

However, “we make no promise to renounce the use of force and reserve the option of taking all necessary means” to serve the end, Xi added.

Asked about Xi’s threat, military spokesman Major General Chen Chung-chi (陳中吉) said the training and drills being conducted are intended to prepare the armed forces to counter a possible invasion.

“We want to assure citizens that the military is constantly improving its combat preparedness and stands ready to fight for the survival of the Republic of China,” he said.

This story has been viewed 15317 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top