Taiwan has extended compulsory military service to one year. Last Minute WORLD headlines and events

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Taiwan is preparing to increase its mandatory military service from four months to one year in 2024 amid rising military threats from China.

China, which wants to bring democratically ruled Taiwan under its sovereignty, has recently stepped up military, diplomatic and economic pressure on the island. China’s activities include sending its air force around the island every day for the past three years.

Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen said that Taiwan wants peace, but must also satisfy its self-defence needs.

“As long as Taiwan is strong enough, it will be the cradle of democracy and freedom throughout the world, not a battlefield,” Tsai said in a press release after a security meeting that decided to extend his military service. made.

Tsai noted that the current military system, including the training of reservists, is inadequate and insufficient to deal with China’s growing military threat, especially in the event of a surprise attack.

Taiwan’s leader said, “Taiwan wants to tell the world that it firmly believes in democracy between democracy and dictatorship. We choose peace between war and peace. Let’s show courage and determination to defend our homeland and democracy.”

Education will increase

Those who are recruited into the military will receive more advanced training, including target shooting and combat training used by US soldiers, while Stringer will learn to use more effective weapons such as anti-aircraft missiles and anti-tank missiles.

This year, Taiwan complained about delays in the supply of American weapons, including Stingers; however, Tsai said the situation had improved after talks with the US.

The de facto US embassy in Taiwan welcomed the announcement of military service reform.

“The commitment of the United States to Taiwan and the steps taken by Taiwan to enhance its self-defense capability contribute to maintaining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and the region,” the American Institute on Taiwan said in a statement.

Tsai’s security delegation and the National Security Council have been inspecting Taiwan’s military system since 2020, according to a Reuters official.

Taipei said in a statement yesterday that China has so far committed the largest air force violations and that 43 Chinese aircraft entered the air defense zone and crossed the alleged median line in the Taiwan Strait.

China also conducted exercises in the region in August following US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan.

The Taiwanese government says that in the face of China’s claim to sovereignty over the island, the Taiwanese people want to decide their own future.

In a statement after the meeting, the defense ministry said the duties of the conscripts were to protect critical infrastructure and ensure the army could act quickly in the face of possible invasion attempts from China.

Chie Chang, a researcher at the Taipei-based National Policy Foundation think tank, estimates that the current 165,000-strong professional military will be added to the current 60-70,000-strong professional military by 2027 and beyond. extension of military service.

Despite the extension, Taiwan’s conscription in South Korea is less than 18 months. South Korea also faces a threat from North Korea, which has nuclear weapons.

Tsai oversees a comprehensive modernization program, championing the idea of ​​”asymmetric warfare” to make the island’s forces more mobile, maneuverable, and immune to attack.

While the United States has been pressuring Taiwan to modernize its military, Tsai said there has been no pressure from Washington to implement these reforms.

“Lessons of the Ukrainian War”

Growing Chinese pressure on the island, as well as the war in Ukraine, have left Taiwan thinking about how to bolster its defenses.

Tsai said some of the lessons learned from the war in Ukraine have been applied to Taiwan’s defense reform efforts, and that Ukraine’s ability to counter the bulk of Russian troops has given the international community time to lend support to Ukraine.

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