Bharat Express

Chinese Balloon Seen Over Taiwan Strait Months Before Election

China has increased military pressure on Taiwan


Taiwan’s defence ministry announced on Friday that a Chinese weather balloon had crossed the Taiwan Strait median line on Thursday, roughly a month before Taiwan’s presidential election.

Chiu Kuo-cheng, Taiwan’s Defence Minister said, “Our initial understanding is that it was a sounding balloon”.

Taiwan, which China claims as its territory, routinely accuses Beijing of attempting to manipulate its elections in favor of the Chinese government through military or economic pressure.

On January 13, 2024, the island will hold presidential and parliamentary elections.

Over the last four years, China has increased military pressure on Taiwan, including two rounds of large war drills around the island in the last year and a half.

The balloon was discovered 101 nautical miles (187 kilometres) southwest of the northern Taiwanese city of Keelung and traveled east for approximately an hour before disappearing, according to the defence ministry.

Earlier this year, the defence ministry stated that a balloon that crashed on a remote Taiwanese-held islet off China’s coast was meant for weather observation and included no audio-visual recording equipment.

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