Taipei [Taiwan], September 28 (ANI): Taiwan should develop the range, precision and mobility of its weapons to boost the island's defenses, said Taiwan Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng on Monday.
"It is necessary for our weapons to have long-range, precision and mobility," Sputnik quoted Chiu as saying. He added that it will boost the island's defenses and the combat readiness of its armed forces.
With the purchase of US F-16V fighter jets, Taiwan's defense budget for 2022 reaches USD 18.6 billion, the minister noted. In addition, Taiwan is to spend an extra USD 8.6 billion on weapons within the next five years, Sputnik reported.
This comes as China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) continues to breach Taiwan's Air defense identification zone (ADIZ). PLA has breached Taiwan's Air defense identification zone (ADIZ) more than 60 times in the month of September.
Beijing claims full sovereignty over Taiwan, a democracy of almost 24 million people located off the southeastern coast of mainland China, despite the fact that the two sides have been governed separately for more than seven decades.
Taipei, on the other hand, has countered the Chinese aggression by increasing strategic ties with democracies including the US, which has been repeatedly opposed by Beijing. China has threatened that "Taiwan's independence" means war.
On June 1, Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to complete reunification with self-ruled Taiwan and vowed to smash any attempts at formal independence for the island. (ANI)