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Chinese war games continue around Taiwan for second day

China’s military started its second day of war games around Taiwan, with drills to test their ability to “seize power” and control key areas, exercises it said were launched to punish Taiwan’s President Lai Ching-te.

The two days of drills in the Taiwan Strait and around groups of Taiwan-controlled islands near the Chinese coast started just three days after Lai took office.

Taiwan has condemned China’s actions.

China, which views democratically governed Taiwan as its own territory and denounces Lai as a “separatist”, decried his inauguration speech on Monday, in which he urged Beijing to stop its threats and said the two sides of the strait were “not subordinate to each other”.

The Eastern Theatre Command of the People’s Liberation Army said in a brief statement that its forces continued with their drills.

It said the exercises are to “test the ability to jointly seize power, launch joint attacks and occupy key areas”.

China has never ruled out the use of force to bring Taiwan under its control.

Taiwan’s armed forces were mobilised to monitor and shadow Chinese forces.

Taiwan’s defence ministry published pictures of fighter aircrafts armed with live missiles patrolling the skies.

It also showed pictures of Chinese coast guard vessels and Chinese Jiangtao-class corvettes, though it did not say exactly where the images were taken.

Lai has repeatedly offered talks with China but has been rebuffed. He says only Taiwan’s people can decide their future and rejects Beijing’s sovereignty claims.

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