US Navy, Coast Guard Ships Pass Through Strategic Taiwan Strait

Voice of America News reports: “The United States sent Navy and Coast Guard ships through the Taiwan Strait on Sunday, the military said, as the United States increases the frequency of movement through the strategic waterway despite opposition from China.

The voyage risks further raising tensions with China but will likely be viewed by self-ruled Taiwan as a sign of support from Washington amid growing friction between Taipei and Beijing.

The two ships were identified as the Navy Curtis Wilbur destroyer and the Coast Guard Bertholf cutter, a U.S. military statement said.

‘The ships’ transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the U.S. commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific,’ the statement said.

‘The U.S. will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows,’ it added.

Taiwan is one of a growing number of flashpoints in the U.S.-China relationship, which also include a trade war, U.S.

sanctions and China’s increasingly muscular military posture in the South China Sea, where the United States also conducts freedom of navigation patrols…”

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