US navy has repeatedly conducted 'freedom of navigation' exercises as a way to undermine China's pretensions in the South China SeaImage: U.S. Navy/Zumapress/picture alliance
US to conduct 'freedom of navigation' transit near Taiwan
August 12, 2022
The US will launch air and maritime transit operations in the next few weeks. The move comes in response to China's "more provocative and destabilizing behavior."
A senior US official said Friday the US was set to conduct "freedom of navigation" operations in the Taiwan Strait during the coming weeks.
Kurt Campbell, the US Indo-Pacific coordinator in the administration of President Joe Biden, said the operations will consist of "air and maritime transit through the Taiwan Strait over the next few weeks."
"We will ensure that our presence, posture and exercise account for China's more provocative and destabilizing behavior, with a view towards guiding the situation in the western Pacific towards greater stability," Campbell added.
After seven days of large-scale military exercises near Taiwan, China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) announced Wednesday that the drills had concluded. However, Beijing pledged to continue "regular combat readiness patrols" in the area, raising the possibility of frequent Chinese military operations near the self-governed democratic island.
The drills over the last week were conducted in response to Pelosi's visit just over a week ago.