Chinese missiles flew over Taiwan during military exercises launched by Beijing in response to the visit to Taipei of the Leader of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, China’s state media reported on Friday.
Pelosi angered Chinese authorities by visiting Taiwan, where she spent just 24 hours on Tuesday.
China, which considers Taiwan part of its territory, launched the most important military exercises in its history around the island on Thursday, in a total of six areas.
The Chinese military and government have not yet formally confirmed that the Chinese missiles flew over Taiwan during the exercises, while the Taiwanese authorities also refuse to confirm.
However, the Taiwanese Defense Ministry said in a statement Friday that Chinese “warplanes and warships” had crossed the “median line” of the Taiwan Strait, which separates the island from the mainland. The ministry denounced “highly provocative” military exercises.
The Japanese Ministry of Defense stated that of the nine missiles it detected, four “would have flown over the main island of Taiwan”.
“This time our exercises included live fire, and it was the first time they flew over Taiwan,” Meng Xiangqinq, a professor at the army-affiliated National Defense University, told Chinese state television CCTV.
The military exercises are scheduled to last until noon on Sunday, and China has so far ignored outraged protests from the United States and its allies.