in Taiwan’s armed forces An unidentified civilian drone that entered the country’s airspace was shot down for the first time on Thursday near a small island off the coast of China, after the government pledged strict measures to deal with an increase in such breaches.
Beijing, which claims Taiwan as Chinese territory despite strong objections from the Taipei government, has been conducting military exercises around the island since early last month in response to a visit by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Taiwan’s government has said it will not raise or escalate tensions, but has been particularly alarmed recently by repeated cases of Chinese drones on Taiwan-controlled islands off the coast of China.
The defense command of Kinmen, a group of islands controlled by Taiwan opposite the Chinese cities of Xiamen and Quanzhou, said in a statement issued by the Taiwan Defense Ministry, that the drone entered the restricted airspace over Lion Island shortly after noon local time.
He added that the forces on the island tried to warn him, but in vain, so they shot him, and the remains fell into the sea.
Taiwan fired warning shots at a drone for the first time on Tuesday, shortly after President Tsai Ing-wen ordered the military to take “strong countermeasures” in the face of what it called Chinese provocations.
China’s Foreign Ministry, which on Monday dismissed Taiwan’s claims about the drones as “no noise,” referred questions to the Defense Ministry, which has yet to comment.
Copyright © Thomson Reuters.
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