Clatter of guns! A major Chinese live-fire exercise has begun in the waters around Taiwan. China simulates the blockade of the island, its shelling with rockets and the subsequent occupation. Taiwan sees this as just intimidation, but has put its army on alert just to be sure. China is using everything it has in its arsenal. There are bombers and the latest fighters in the air. Warships, including both Chinese aircraft carriers, set sail. Hypersonic missiles, ballistic missiles and missiles with a flat flight path fall into the six areas they closed for the exercise. The maneuvers are supposed to last until Sunday. The mentioned areas were closed to both ship and air traffic. Moving close to them is not very safe either. For example, five Chinese ballistic missiles landed in Japan’s exclusive economic zone. Such a zone extends to a distance of 370 km from the coast of the given country. According to Japan, something like this has happened for the first time and has already filed a diplomatic complaint. The closure of the mentioned six zones means a big problem for Taiwan. Up to 50 flights to and from the island have been canceled and shipping is being diverted. The Taiwan Strait is one of the busiest routes in the world. Half of all container ships and 88 percent of the world’s largest cargo ships pass through it annually.
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