February 26, 2019
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States sent two Navy ships through the Taiwan Strait on Monday as the U.S. military increased the frequency of movement through the strategic waterway despite opposition from China.
The voyage risks further raising tensions with China but will likely be viewed by self-ruled Taiwan as a sign of support from the Trump administration amid growing friction between Taipei and Beijing.
The movement comes as U.S. President Donald Trump said the United States and China were “very, very close” to a deal to end a months-long trade war that has slowed global growth and disrupted markets.
The U.S. Navy’s passage through the Taiwan Strait also came just days before a summit between Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un.
“The ships’ transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the U.S. commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the U.S. Pacific Fleet said in a…
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