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World: China slams Taiwan's 'cannon fodder' conscription decision

China sends 71 warplanes, 7 ships toward Taiwan in 24 hours

  China sends 71 warplanes, 7 ships toward Taiwan in 24 hours TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — China’s military sent 71 planes and seven ships toward Taiwan in a 24-hour display of force directed at the island, Taiwan’s defense ministry said Monday, after China expressed anger at Taiwan-related provisions i n a U.S. annual defense spending bill passed on Saturday. China’s military harassment of self-ruled Taiwan, which it claims is its own territory, has intensified in recent years, and the Communist Party’s People’s Liberation Army has sent planes or ships toward the island on a near-daily basis. Between 6 a.m. Sunday and 6 a.m.

BEIJING, Dec 28 (Reuters) - China's government criticized Taiwan on Wednesday for seeking to use the Taiwanese people as "cannon fodder" by extending compulsory military service from four months to one year starting in 2024.

Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen announced the extension to compulsory military service on Tuesday, citing the rising threat that the island faces from its giant neighbor China.

China considers democratically-governed Taiwan its own territory and has never renounced the use of force to bring the island under its control.

Responding to a question on Taiwan's decision to lengthen the period of miltary service, China's foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said that "struggling for the great task of achieving national reunification is immeasurably significant, dying for Taiwan independence separatist activities is completely worthless."

"We believe Taiwan compatriots are highly principled, they will not be put up as cannon fodder by Taiwan independence separatist forces," Wang told a regular news conference.

China has ramped up military, diplomatic and economic pressure on Taiwan to assert its sovereignty claims, including almost daily Chinese air force missions near the island over the past three years.

Taiwan's government says only the island's 23 million people can decide their future. (Reporting by Eduardo Baptista; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

Taiwan extends mandatory military service amid rising China threat .
The mandatory military service in Taiwan has been extended, President Tsai Ing-wen announced on Tuesday. Starting in 2024, men born after 2005 will be required to serve for a full year, while those born before then will maintain the four-month mandatory service minimum under a revamped training program. Tsai made the change due to the rising threat from China."No one wants war," she explained. "This is true of Taiwan's government and people, and the global community, but peace does not come from the sky, and Taiwan is at the front lines of the expansion of authoritarianism.

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