China conducts 'precision missile strikes' in Taiwan Strait after Pelosi's visit
China said it conducted "precision missile strikes" in the Taiwan Strait on Thursday as part of military exercises that have raised tensions in the region to their highest level in decades.
China earlier announced that military exercises by its navy, air force and other departments were underway in six zones surrounding Taiwan, which Beijing claims as its own territory to be annexed by force if necessary.
State broadcaster CCTV released footage of long-range rocket artillery being fired towards the Taiwan Strait, as well as the launching of conventional missiles that it said landed in waters to the east of Taiwan.
The drills were prompted by a visit to the island by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi this week and are intended to advertise China's threat to attack the self-governing island republic.
Along with its moves to isolate Taiwan diplomatically, China has long threatened military retaliation over moves by the island to solidify its de facto independence with the support of key allies including the U.S.
Taiwan's Defense Ministry said it tracked the firing of Chinese Dongfeng series missiles beginning around 1:56 p.m. (05:56 GMT) Thursday.
It said in a statement it used various early warning surveillance systems to track the missile launches, which were directed at waters northeast and southwest of Taiwan.
The defense ministry also said they tracked long-distance rockets and ammunition firing in outlying islands in Matsu, Wuqiu and Dongyin.
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