HomeGlobal Defence UpdatesTaiwan slams Chinese balloons as safety threat, psychological warfare

Taiwan slams Chinese balloons as safety threat, psychological warfare

msid 106589832,imgsize

Taiwan’s defence ministry accused China on Saturday of threatening aviation safety and waging psychological warfare on the island’s people with a recent spate of balloons spotted near or over the island, days before key Taiwanese elections.

The potential for China to use balloons for spying became a global issue in February when the United States shot down what it said was a Chinese surveillance balloon. China said the balloon was a civilian craft that accidentally drifted astray.

Taiwan is on high alert for Chinese military and political activity ahead of the Jan. 13 presidential and parliamentary elections. It says China is exerting military and economic pressure in an attempt to interfere in the elections.

China views the island as its own territory, a claim Taiwan’s government rejects.

Since last month Taiwan’s defence ministry has reported several instances of Chinese balloons flying over the sensitive Taiwan Strait. It said this week some balloons had flown over Taiwan island near major air bases.

In a statement on Saturday, the ministry said the balloons were a “serious threat” to international aviation safety given their flight paths. “We also express our condemnation of the Chinese communists’ disregard for aviation safety and its disregard for the safety of passengers on cross-Taiwan Strait and international flights,” it said. The ministry said its analysis was that the balloons were part of China’s “grey zone” tactics against Taiwan “in an attempt to use cognitive warfare to affect the morale of our people”.

Calls seeking comment to China’s defence ministry, Taiwan Affairs Office and civil aviation administration were not answered on Saturday outside of work hours.

China’s defence ministry last week declined to comment on the balloons at a monthly news conference.

In a separate statement on Saturday, Taiwan’s defence ministry said that during the previous 24 hours it had detected two more Chinese balloons, one of which briefly flew over the far northern tip of the island.

The ministry had said it thought the balloons were mostly for weather monitoring, driven by prevailing winds at this time of year, and the comments on them being part of China’s “grey zone” activities are stronger than previous statements.

Taiwan has complained over the past four years of stepped-up Chinese military action such as fighter jets regularly flying over the strait as part of a “grey zone” strategy attempting to wear down Taiwan with offensive actions that stop short of full-blown conflict.

The United States, Taiwan’s most important international backer and arms supplier, has watched with alarm as tensions over the semiconductor powerhouse island have risen.

Asked about the balloons at a news conference in Washington on Thursday, White House national security spokesman John Kirby said he could not comment.

“We obviously support the democracy and the democratic institutions of Taiwan, and we want to see free, fair, open, transparent elections there.” he said. “And we’re certainly mindful that outside actors could try to interfere.”

China says the Taiwan government’s repeated accusations of election interference are “dirty tricks” aimed at boosting the chances of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, which Beijing detests, calling them separatists.

A Western security source, speaking on condition of anonymity as they were not authorised to speak to the media, said China was sending a very simple pre-election message to Taiwan with the balloons.

“We are watching you closely and you can’t hide,” the source said.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Aatmanirbhar Bharat


ASMI submachine gun from Hyderabad’s Lokesh Machines Ltd. poised for Army service

In a new development, Lokesh Machines Ltd., a city-based manufacturer known for CNC machines, has achieved a significant milestone with its debut small arms...

A study reveals how India can achieve $5 billion defence export goal

A recent study suggests that streamlining foreign direct investment (FDI), enhancing Research & Development (R&D), and boosting manufacturing capabilities could help India reach its...

AMCA 5th Generation Stealth Fighter Updates

AMCA to be integrated with sophisticated indigenous Distributed Aperture System (DAS) that making it a formidable air asset for the Indian Air Force

Source : IgMp Bureau India’s Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) is on the brink of a revolutionary transformation with the integration of a sophisticated Distributed...

AMCA to incorporate the best features of both 5th and 6th Generation fighters: ADA sources

Source : IgMp Bureau India's strides toward indigenous air dominance receive a substantial boost with the green signal for the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA)...

Most Popular

Recent Comments

Archive Months


India explores export of defence equipment to Oman to elevate strategic partnership

Source : The Economic Times Eyeing to expand the India-Oman strategic partnership close on the heels of Sultan Haitham bin Tarik’s India trip, deputy national...

North korea news: North Korea aims to switch to solid-fuel missiles for faster launches

North Korea successfully test-fired a new hypersonic missile, state news agency KCNA said on Wednesday, the latest step in a plan its leader Kim...

VL-SRSAM achieves unbelievable range and versatility; Comes close to the range of Barak-8 LR-SAM of the Indian Navy

Source : IgMp Bureau VL-SRSAM achieves unbelievable range and versatility; Comes close to the range of Barak-8 LR-SAM of the Indian Navy In a comprehensive year-end...
error: Content is protected !!