By Peter McLaren-Kennedy •
Updated: 27 Dec 2022 • 9:09
Invasion protection spikes - Image leungchopan / Shutterstock.com
China has stated on many occasions that the island is part of the country and that the two will be reunified one day if need be by force. The threats have escalated under the current President, Xi Jinping, with the Chinese military regularly entering Taiwan’s territorial waters and air space.
Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen announced the change in military conscription on Tuesday, December 27 in response to the increasing incidence of Chinese bombers flying around the island, the latest on December 26.
China has been emboldened by new ally Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, however, they have been warned by NATO and the U.S. that they will defend Taiwan who they consider an ally.
The self-ruled, democratic Taiwan, which has never been formally recognised internationally as a separate country, has said that it needs to adjust its military structure in light of recent threats. It hasn’t elaborated on the changes, but it is known to be in discussion with the West over the supply of more defence systems that will enable the country to protect itself from an invasion.
The mandatory military service extension comes into operation in January 2024, with Taiwan massively outgunned by its larger neighbour from whom it split following the Chinese Civil War in 1949.
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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