The military yesterday simulated an invasion by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) on the first day of the annual five-day live-fire phase of the Han Kuang military exercises.
The Ministry of National Defense’s Joint Operations Command Center, also known as the Hengshan Command Center, ordered F-16V jets from Hualien Air Force Base to conduct emergency takeoffs in batches from 5:30am yesterday to defend the airspace along the east coast.
Some fighter jets based in western Taiwan were dispatched to Hualien as part of a simulation in which most of the nation’s military bases in the west were “destroyed.”
Photo: Yu Tai-lang, Taipei Times
C-130 transport aircraft were used to take military personnel responsible for fighter jet maintenance, together with equipment and supplies, to designated locations in eastern Taiwan.
Naval vessels also set sail and troops practiced defense tactics as if they were being attacked by enemy planes or missiles.
The tabletop drills for the 38th edition of the Han Kuang exercises were carried out from May 16 to May 20, while the live-fire exercises are to conclude on Friday.
The live-fire exercises are divided into three parts — the military is to practice conserving its forces and air defense over the first two days, joint interception on the third day and joint territory defense on the last two days.
In related news, the Fisheries Agency posted a bulletin saying that the military and the Coast Guard Administration are to carry out a series of live-fire drills after the Han Kuang exercises are over.
Troops stationed in Penghu and Kinmen counties, and on Dongyin Island (東引) and the Pratas Islands (Dongsha Islands, 東沙群島) would conduct exercises next month and those stationed on Itu Aba Island (Taiping Island, 太平島) would do so in September, the bulletin said.
The Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology canceled artillery tests in Taiwan’s southeastern sea and airspace on Wednesday and Thursday, but the artillery drill on Wednesday and Thursday next week would be carried out, it said.
The Army Matsu Defense Command would conduct exercises at night on Friday and Saturday next week, the Army Kinmen Defense Command would choose 11 days to conduct artillery exercises from Thursday next week to Aug. 31 and the Army Penghu Defense Command would carry out exercises in the Wude (五德) region on Aug. 24 and Aug. 25, it said.
The coast guard would be in charge of the artillery exercises on the Dongsha Islands on Saturday next week and Aug. 13, followed by the exercises on Taiping Island on Sept. 20 and Sept. 21, it said.
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