The latest orders handed down from China’s President Xi Jinping have raised concerns over whether or not the country is planning on going to war.
During his visit on Thursday to the southern Guangdong province, Xi said the Southern Theatre Command, which oversees the South China Sea, must focus on preparing for combat and war, Fox News reported Monday.
“It’s necessary to strengthen the mission … and concentrate preparations for fighting a war,” Xi said. “We need to take all complex situations into consideration and make emergency plans accordingly.”
“We have to step up combat readiness exercises, joint exercises and confrontational exercises to enhance servicemen’s capabilities and preparation for war,” he added.
Xi Jinping during an inspection visit to the Southern Theater Command on Oct. 24th: “We have to step up combat readiness exercises, joint exercises and confrontational exercises to enhance servicemen’s capabilities and preparation for war.”https://sc.mp/l1eyz
‘Prepare for war’, Xi Jinping tells military region that monitors South China Sea, Taiwan
China must ‘take all complex situations into consideration and make emergency plans accordingly’, leader says on visit to Southern Theatre Command.
Xi’s remarks to the Southern Theatre Command came during his four-day inspection tour in south China.
The Southern Theatre Command is in charge of patrolling Taiwan and the South China Sea, both of which have been sources of contention for China.
Just last week, Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe reiterated China’s position on Taiwan, saying they refused to give up “one single piece” of its territory. He also called Taiwan’s attempts of sovereignty a dangerous action that would be met with military response.
However, some say that Xi’s comments likely serve to intimidate the U.S. over their continued support of Taiwan, and presence in the South China Sea.
Collin Koh, a research fellow at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, said Xi’s comments are “likely intended as a signal to the U.S. in particular and any parties that Beijing perceives to be causing provocation [in the disputed waters],” according to the South China Morning Post.
In the South China Sea, China has acted aggressively to foreign ships and aircraft who enter the area, despite foreign ships and aircraft patrolling in accordance with international law.
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