CHINA PROTESTS U.S. NAVY SHIP’S TRANSIT THROUGH TAIWAN STRAIT
The US Navy has sent a warship through the sensitive Taiwan Strait on Wednesday, March 10, 2021, prompting an angry protest from Beijing that the US promptly ignored, Lawrence Chung, reported for the pro-China South China Morning Post.
The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS John Finn conducted a routine Taiwan Strait transit on Wednesday under international law, the US Seventh Fleet said in a statement.
“The ship’s transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the US commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific. The US military will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows.”
According to the US Seventh Fleet, the John Finn, part of the Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group, was on a scheduled deployment in the fleet’s area of operations.
Photos released by the fleet also showed an MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopter practicing take-offs and landings on the destroyer’s flight deck. It was the third such transit conducted by the Seventh Fleet since the Biden administration took office.
On Thursday, Taiwan’s defense ministry confirmed the passage of the ship, saying it had headed south after sailing through the Taiwan Strait. As usual, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) denounced the transit as “deliberate showing off” and a “provocation” that served only to undermine regional and cross-strait stability.