Joe Biden "concerned about China's actions" in the Pacific region

China's military announced fresh military drills in the seas and airspace around Taiwan on Monday, a day after the scheduled end of its largest ever exercises to protest against last week's visit to the island by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Reuters reports.

China is also halting co-operation with the U.S. in several key areas including climate change, military talks, and efforts to combat international crime.

U.S. President Joe Biden, in his first public comments on Taiwan since Pelosi's visit, said he was not worried about Taiwan but was concerned about China's actions in the region.

"I'm concerned they are moving as much as they are," Biden told reporters in Delaware. "But I don't think they're going to do anything more than they are."

China, which also announced it was sanctioning Ms Pelosi and her family, viewed the visit as a challenge to its claims of sovereignty over Taiwan.

The measures were announced by China's foreign ministry on Friday. It said dialogue between U.S and Chinese defence officials would be cancelled, while co-operation on returning illegal immigrants, climate change, and investigating international crime would be suspended.

China's Eastern Theatre Command said it would conduct joint drills focusing on anti-submarine and sea assault operations - confirming the fears of some security analysts and diplomats that Beijing would continue to maintain pressure on Taiwan's defences.

Taiwan's foreign ministry condemned the move, saying China, which claims the self-ruled island as its own, was deliberately creating crises. It demanded Beijing stop its military actions and "pull back from the edge".

"In the face of military intimidation created by China, Taiwan will not be afraid nor back down, and will more firmly defend its sovereignty, national security, and free and democratic way of life," the ministry said in a statement.


Image: https://www.whitehouse.gov


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