Two Canadian naval vessels sail through Taiwan Strait: Taipei | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, June 21, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:06 AM, June 21, 2019

Two Canadian naval vessels sail through Taiwan Strait: Taipei

Two Canadian naval vessels sailed through the Taiwan Strait, Taipei’s defence ministry said, in the latest naval passage likely to irk Beijing.

The ships sailed through the narrow waterway separating the Chinese mainland and Taiwan in a “freedom of navigation” operation, the ministry said in a statement issued late Wednesday, without providing any details.

It added that Taiwan’s military had closely monitored the “movements of the relevant aircraft and vessels in the region” as the ships passed through the strait.

Relations between China and Canada have deteriorated since December when police in Vancouver detained Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou on a US arrest warrant.

Days later China arrested two Canadians -- former diplomat Michael Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor -- in what is widely seen as a tit-for-tat move.

China has also blocked Canadian agricultural shipments worth billions of dollars.

It was the latest such naval voyage in the Taiwan Strait in recent months.

Beijing lodged a protest with Washington in May after a US destroyer and a supply ship sailed through the strait amid rising tensions between the two powers.

US warships periodically conduct “freedom of navigation” exercises in the waterway, triggering angry responses from Beijing every time.

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