The Pentagon announced on Wednesday that the US has approved the sale of $619 million in munitions for F-16 fighter jets to Taiwan, which could anger Beijing.
The package includes 100 AGM-88B high-speed anti-radiation missiles (HARM), 200 AIM-120C-8 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAM) and launchers and dummy missiles for training, the Pentagon said in a statement in said statement.
The sale will boost Taiwan’s “ability to defend its airspace, provide regional security and interoperability with the United States”.
The announcement comes amid rising tensions between the United States and China over Taiwan, as well as the downing of a balloon over US airspace last month that Washington says was a Chinese surveillance device.
Taiwan has been self-governing for more than seven decades, but Beijing regards it as a renegade province.
The US State Department separately said the sale was in line with the Taiwan Relations Act and Washington’s One China policy, which acknowledges there is only one state called China.
“The United States’ support of Taiwan and the steps Taiwan takes to enhance its self-defense capabilities contribute to the maintenance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and within the region,” the State Department said.
Taiwan said it welcomed the first US arms sale of the year and the ninth so far during President Joe Biden’s term.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Jeff Liu said, “Taiwan will continue to actively improve its self-defense capabilities in the face of China’s continued military expansion and provocative behavior.”
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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