Tue, 06 Jun 2023

Tokyo [Japan], August 5 (ANI): Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and visiting US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have stressed the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait amid rising tensions since the visit of the US delegation to the self-governed island.

"We confirmed that we will work together to make sure peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait are maintained," Kishida was quoted as saying by Kyodo News after meeting with Pelosi.

"China's behaviour has a serious impact on the peace and stability of the region and the world and I explained that we called for an immediate halt to the exercises," he said.

The Japanese government on Thursday condemned the firing of five ballistic missiles by the Chinese military in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and characterised this action as an "extremely coercive" move.

China is conducting live-fire drills in response to Pelosi's visit to Taiwan. The missiles that China launched yesterday fell in an area located southwest of Hateruma Island in the southern prefecture of Okinawa.

Japan's Kyodo News reported that Tokyo has asked Beijing to immediately stop the military drills. "This is a grave issue that concerns our country's national security and the safety of the people," said Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi on Thursday.

The Fumio Kishida government lodged a diplomatic protest with the Chinese government. The Japanese publication has said the government slammed Chinese drills near Senkaku Islands, saying that the area overlaps with the EEZ.

On August 4, China launched multiple ballistic missiles into waters to the northeast and southwest of Taiwan, threatening Taiwan's national security and escalating regional tensions in the region.

Taiwan has strongly condemned China's "North Korea" style missile firing into waters near the self-governed island as it asked Beijing to exercise self-restraint.

Live-fire drills began in seven identified zones around the island, that regard its own and threaten to take over. The Chinese PLA organized joint combat training exercises near Taiwan waters and airspace, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Taiwan government has urged the international community to condemn China's military coercion toward Taiwan.

The United States also denounced China's missile launches in Japan's exclusive economic zone that were carried out as part of military exercises in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Taiwan.

"We condemn these actions which are irresponsible and at odds with our long-standing goal of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and in the region," National Security Council Strategic Communications Coordinator John Kirby told a briefing on Thursday.

Pelosi's high-stakes visit marks the first visit by a US House Speaker in 25 years since Newt Gingrich came to Taiwan in April 1997. It was also Pelosi's first trip to Taiwan in over two decades. (ANI)

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