UPDATED 7:12 AM PT — Friday, January 17, 2019
The U.S. Navy is considering sending an aircraft carrier through the Taiwan Strait despite growing Chinese military aggression in the region.
While speaking Thursday, Admiral John Richardson dismissed threats from Beijing by explaining that the U.S. has a right to access international waterways.
This could be the first time in over a decade that an aircraft carrier is dispatched to the Taiwan Strait, where China has built up a defense system to strike enemy ships.
The U.S. faced backlash from Beijing last year, when it allowed several warships to pass through the strait.
Taiwan is currently conducting live fire drills in the region, and is closely monitoring China’s movements.
“We have been using radar to closely monitor any unidentified aircrafts and military movements from China,” stated Taiwanese fighter pilot Li Yi-h-Hsiu. “Our Ministry of National Defense will dispatch us to closely watch China’s movement from the air”.
Admiral Richardson recently visited China, where he encouraged officials to uphold international law and to stop viewing U.S. warships in the strait as a threat.