The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Theater Command expels a US Navy EP-3E electronic reconnaissance aircraft trespassing into PLA exercise zone. The scene is revealed in a music video titled "Reviewing the Straits" released by the PLA Eastern Theater Command on August 17, 2023. (Photo/Screenshot of the WeChat account of the PLA Eastern Theater Command)
The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Eastern Theater Command on Thursday released a video displaying its combat readiness in a move experts said sends a stern warning to "Taiwan independence" secessionist forces amid U.S. "stopovers" by the island of Taiwan's deputy regional leader Lai Ching-te.
Titled "Reviewing the Straits," the music video shows the hot-blooded feelings and responsibilities of the frontline officers and soldiers who are preparing for combat with training, the PLA Eastern Theater Command said in a press release on Thursday.
All members of the PLA Eastern Theater Command are waiting to fight at all times and will resolutely safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity, the press release said.
The video features footage of the PLA Eastern Theater Command's training exercises.
Steel torrents of tanks and armored vehicles, swarms of helicopters are seen pushing forward, as infantry and special forces march on beachheads, before engaging in mountain operations and urban warfare.
The aircraft carrier Shandong, H-6K bombers escorted by fighter jets, soldiers parachuting from a Y-20 transport aircraft, DF-15 ballistic missiles moving into position, and Type 05 amphibious armored vehicles being released from amphibious landing ships, also appear in the video.
It also shows a PLA Air Force Su-30 fighter jet flying with the Central Mountain Range of the island of Taiwan in its background and PLA Navy vessels monitoring warships of the island of Taiwan.
The video showed a scene in which the PLA Eastern Theater Command was expelling a U.S. Navy EP-3E electronic reconnaissance aircraft.
The U.S. spy plane is seen from the perspective of a PLA aircraft, as the PLA states in a radio communication that the U.S. aircraft must leave immediately as it has entered a PLA exercise zone.
Elements in the video, including amphibious landings, parachuting, urban warfare, precision strikes and expelling U.S. forces, are strongly pointed to that the exercises were about the island of Taiwan, a Chinese mainland military expert who requested anonymity told the Global Times on Thursday.
The video was released at a time when Lai, also a candidate of the separatist Democratic Progressive Party for the 2024 Taiwan regional leader election, is returning on Friday from his trip to Paraguay, during which he made two "stopovers" in the U.S..
The timing for the release of the video is very sensitive and is very clearly targeted to send a strong warning to "Taiwan independence" secessionist forces, particularly with the word "Straits" in the title referring to the Taiwan Straits, an expert on the Taiwan question who requested anonymity told the Global Times on Thursday.
When Taiwan regional leader Tsai Ing-wen made "stopovers" in the U.S. in a similar manner in April, the PLA Eastern Theater Command held combat alert patrols and "Joint Sword" exercises encircling the island of Taiwan in waters to the east of the island.
China is closely following the developments of the situation and will take resolute and strong measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity, said Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin at a regular press conference on Tuesday, in response to a question whether China plans to launch new war games or major military exercises once Lai returns to Taiwan island on Friday.