China’s military held missile firing drills into the waters surrounding Taiwan on Thursday (August 4), state media reported, a day after a visit by United States House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the self-ruled island that Beijing regards as its sovereign territory.
State broadcaster CCTV carried footage of multiple rounds of missiles being fired from ground positions. Reuters could not independently verify where or when the missile firing drills took place.
China’s Eastern Theatre Command said it had completed multiple firings of conventional missiles on waters off the eastern coast of Taiwan as part of the planned exercises. Soon after the scheduled start at 0400 GMT, CCTV said the drills had begun and would end at 0400 GMT on Sunday (August 7).
Taiwan’s defence ministry confirmed that several Dongfeng missiles had been fired in waters to the northeast and southwest of the island. Taiwan officials have said the drills violate United Nations rules, invade Taiwan’s territorial space and are a direct challenge to free air and sea navigation.
Taiwan scrambled jets and deployed missile systems to track multiple Chinese aircraft crossing the line. The last time China fired missiles into waters around Taiwan was in 1996.