World: In a banned tweet, a top state-media commentator reportedly said China could 'forcibly dispel Pelosi's plane' and shoot it down if it flies to Taiwan

Taiwan Conducts Air Raid Drills Amid China Tension, Potential Pelosi Visit

  Taiwan Conducts Air Raid Drills Amid China Tension, Potential Pelosi Visit While the Biden administration hasn't embraced the House speaker's visit to the self-governing island, Republicans have pressed for her to make the trip.The self-governing island on Monday kicked off its Han Kuang military exercises, an annual five-day event simulating an invasion by China. While Taiwan's drills were previously planned, Pelosi's possible visit comes amid heightened tensions with Beijing and has drawn strong reactions in both the U.S. and China.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi attends her weekly news conference at the US Capitol on February 23, 2022 in Washington, DC. Win McNamee/Getty Images © Win McNamee/Getty Images House Speaker Nancy Pelosi attends her weekly news conference at the US Capitol on February 23, 2022 in Washington, DC. Win McNamee/Getty Images
  • A propagandist for the Chinese government warned that the plane carrying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi could be attacked.
  • Pelosi's aides have not yet confirmed if the Speaker's Asia tour will include a visit to Taiwan.
  • Military experts have warned that a visit to Taiwan could heighten the risk of a regional crisis.

A leading propagandist for the Chinese government warned that China's military could attack the plane carrying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi if it's escorted by US fighter planes on a much-speculated stopover in Taiwan in her upcoming visit to Asia.

Xi, Biden to speak as possible Pelosi Taiwan visit looms

  Xi, Biden to speak as possible Pelosi Taiwan visit looms BEIJING (AP) — U.S. President Joe Biden is planning to speak with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping for the first time in four months, with a wide range of bilateral and international issues on the table. But a potential visit to Taiwan by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is looming over the conversation set for Thursday, with China warning of a severe response if she travels to the self-governing island democracy Beijing claims as its own territory.

Pelosi departed on Friday for a tour that could include a controversial stop in Taiwan, the self-governed island democracy at the heart of rising tensions between Beijing and Washington.

In a now-banned tweet, Hu Xijin, a commentator with the Chinese-state-owned Global Times, wrote, "If US fighter jets escort Pelosi's plane into Taiwan, it is [an] invasion. The [People's Liberation Army] has the right to forcibly dispel Pelosi's plane and the US fighter jets, including firing warning shots and making tactical movement of obstruction."

"If ineffective, then shoot them down," Hu added, per the New York Post.

The Guardian dubbed Hu "China's troll king" and its "most famous propagandist" in a 2021 profile. Hu was formerly the editor-in-chief and party secretary of the Global Times, where "he helped establish a chest-thumping new tone for China on the world stage," said The Guardian.

Pelosi's aides have not yet confirmed if the Speaker's trip will include a visit to Taiwan.

Responding to the growing anger in China at the possibility of Pelosi setting foot in Taiwan,  National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said, "There's no reason for it to come to that, to come to blows, to come to increased physical tension. There's no reason for that because there's been no change in American policy with respect to One China," AP reports.

Tensions between China and Taiwan have been high for decades, with China considering the island its territory. In contrast, Taiwan, an island democracy of 23 million that broke away from Communist China in 1947, sees itself as an independent state.

The possibility of a visit to the island by Pelosi has triggered heated rhetoric and warnings from Beijing. Reports indicate the Pentagon is planning to call upon US warplanes and ships to provide additional security near Taiwan if a visit goes ahead.

Top military experts on China have warned that a visit to Taiwan by Pelosi could heighten the risk of an "accident" that could spark a military crisis in the region.

"There's a risk of an accident, not a risk of an imminent Chinese attack on Taiwan," Bonnie Glaser, a leading China expert and director of the Asia program at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, told Insider.

Should she visit the island, approximately 100 miles from China's southeast coast, Pelosi would become the highest-ranking US lawmaker in over two decades to visit Taiwan.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Joe Biden To Make Most Important Call of Presidency to China's Xi Jinping .
The leaders of the two major powers will talk over existing frictions as well as new uncertainties thrown up by Nancy Pelosi's travel plans.The competitive nature of the contemporary relationship has left many fearing a mishap in Asia, one that could spark a wider conflict with global consequences. Crisis management between the two militaries therefore will be high on the agenda for the talks, their fifth in the last 18 months and the latest since March.

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