China’s dramatic military build-up poses a direct threat to Australia and all other nations in the Asia-Pacific region, Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian has warned.
In a blistering attack on Beijing’s military and diplomatic policies, Mr Chen said China wanted to be the dominant power in the Pacific region and had produced missiles with a range of 10,000km that could hit the US, Japan and Australia.
However, international attention had continued to focus on the 700 missiles that China had deployed across the narrow straits of Taiwan.
“The expansion of China’s defence capability is not only targeted against Taiwan,” Mr Chen told The Weekend Australian. “Some of their missiles can reach 10,000km. Therefore their targets include the US, Japan, Australia — all the countries in the Asia-Pacific region.”