China and Russia will hold a series of naval exercises in the Yellow Sea toward the end of this month, a Chinese military spokesman announced last week, in what could be the largest drill ever held by the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) in the West Pacific.
Chinese military spokesman Yang Yujun (楊宇軍) announced during a regular monthly press conference on Thursday that the PLAN and the Russian Navy would hold the exercises under an agreement reached during a visit by PLA Chief of General Staff Chen Bingde (陳炳德) during a visit to Moscow in August last year.
The joint maneuvers, which are planned for April 22 through April 29, will be held in the Yellow Sea, beginning at Vladivostok, Russia, and concluding in Qingdao, in China’s Shandong Province.
The Chinese-language Renmin Ribao reported that the Russian Pacific Fleet would dispatch more than 10 warships, led by a missile cruiser, to participate in the exercise.
On the Chinese side, a mixed fleet, led by a guided-missile destroyer, will be dispatched from the PLAN’s North Sea fleet.
The Hong Kong-based Oriental Daily reported at the weekend that the maneuvers would be the largest ever held by the PLAN in the West Pacific.
Russian Navy Deputy Chief of Staff Rear Admiral Leonid Sukhanov said the exercise would be held within the framework of the “strategic partnership” agreed by the leaders of the both countries.
The exercises will involve tests for the command-and-control, armaments, support and protection systems of the two navies, Sukhanov was quoted by the Renmin Ribao as saying. The navies will also conduct surface and underwater exercises and test combat systems interoperability, as well as the effectiveness of automated control systems, electronics and information warfare.
“Participating naval forces will train in the prevention of armed conflicts in exclusive economic zones,” he said.
China and Russia have conducted a number of joint military exercises since 2005 under the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
The move comes amid a “return” to the Asia-Pacific region announced by the administration of US President Barack Obama. In the coming months, the US Navy is expected to participate in a series of joint exercises in the region, including the Balikatan drills with the Philippines in the South China Sea from April 16 through April 27.
The PLAN’s North Sea fleet would likely play a major role in any conflict over the Diaoyutai Islands (釣魚台), which are claimed by Taiwan, Japan and China.
FEW REMAIN: Conservationists tried to stop the demolition, but to no avail, and the owner cannot be fined, as the structure was not listed as a historical building One of the few remaining Japanese colonial-era granaries in Taiwan was dismantled by its owner on Friday, prompting outrage from conservationists. The granary, which was at No. 16, Lane 11, Hangzhou S Rd Sec 1 in Taipei, belonged to Taiwan Takushoku Corp during the colonial era, conservationist Chang Wan-lin (張琬琳) said, adding that she and others had been collecting information to reapply to have the building protected as a historical structure. During the colonial era, the granary served the area from Monga (艋舺) to what is now Songshan District (松山) in the north, she said. “Back then the eastern part
SEEING THE POSITIVE: A majority of respondents in Taiwan said that they favored Trump because they think Taiwan-US ties would improve with him Among eight Asia-Pacific countries and regions, only Taiwan prefers US President Donald Trump over his challenger, former US vice president Joe Biden, in the upcoming US presidential election, a survey released on Thursday showed. According to the poll published by UK-based market research firm YouGov, 42 percent of Taiwanese favor Trump in the Nov. 3 election, while 30 percent back Biden and 28 percent have no opinion. In contrast, respondents in Malaysia favor Biden over Trump 62 percent to 9 percent, and in Singapore by 66 percent to 12 percent, the survey showed. Biden also led Trump in Australia (60 percent to 21
TROUBLEMAKER: The missiles, capable of striking up to 2,000km away, would likely be used to deter other nations from coming to Taiwan’s aid, a legislator said The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has reportedly deployed advanced hypersonic missiles along China’s southeast coast, which Taiwan’s missile defense system might have difficulty intercepting, an analyst said yesterday. Citing an unnamed military source, the South China Morning Post said that the missile bases on the coasts of China’s Fujian and Zhejiang provinces have been upgraded and are stocked with DF-17 missiles, equipped with hypersonic glide vehicles. “The DF-17 hypersonic missile will gradually replace the old DF-11s and DF-15s that were deployed in the southeast region for decades,” said the source, who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the topic. “The
AIR CONTROL INCIDENT: The Hong Kong side said it ‘cannot accept this aircraft,’ ordering it to ascend to an unsafe altitude and forcing it to return to Kaohsiung The Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) on Friday disclosed a full transcript of the communications between Taiwanese and Hong Kong air traffic controllers, rebutting the latter’s claim that a Taiwanese plane had voluntarily abandoned its flight path. Hong Kong denied permission for the plane to proceed to the disputed Pratas Islands (Dongsha Islands, 東沙群島), which are claimed by both Taiwan and China, the CAA said. The incident happened on Thursday when a civil aircraft chartered by the military was advised by Hong Kong air traffic controllers to not enter the airspace over a group of islands in the South China Sea