Report: Taiwan To Test Missile That Could Reach Beijing
Published: 2 Jun 2010 07:01
TAIPEI - Taiwan is slated to test a missile for the first time that could hit Beijing, a report said Wednesday.
The island's defense ministry immediately denied the report on the medium-range surface-to-surface missile, but said research was being carried out on "various weapons systems."
The missile, designed to hit targets up to 2,000 kilometres (1,240 miles) away, will be launched Thursday and Friday from Chiupeng, a tightly-guarded base in southern Taiwan, Taipei-based Next Magazine said.
If successful, the weapons project codenamed "Ching Sheng" would move into mass production stage, according to the usually well-informed magazine.
The defense ministry plans to deploy 150 such missiles, on top of 240 existing cruise missiles, to form one of the island's main deterrents against Chinese attack, it said.
The medium-range missiles could also be used to strike other major Chinese cities such as Shanghai and Chongqing as well as its ballistic missile bases in eastern and southeast China, it said.
"Research and development of various weapons systems have been carried out as scheduled," a defense ministry official told Agence France-Presse, but added that "the content of the report is not true."
Tensions across the Taiwan Strait have eased significantly since President Ma Ying-jeou of the China-friendly Kuomintang party came to power in 2008, pledging to boost trade links and allowing in more Chinese tourists.
Yet Beijing still refuses to renounce the use of force against Taiwan should it declare formal independence, prompting the island to seek more defensive weapons.
The island has governed itself since it split from the mainland in 1949 at the end of a civil war.
The magazine said China had boosted the number of its missiles aimed at the island from 300 in 2001 to 1,400 in 2008.
U.S. Extends Missile Buildup From Poland And Taiwan To Persian Gulf
February 3, 2010
On January 20 Poland’s Defense Ministry revealed that a U.S. Patriot missile battery previously scheduled to be stationed near the nation’s capital will instead be deployed to a Baltic Sea location 35 miles from Russian territory; on January 29 the White House approved the transfer of 114 Patriot missiles to Taiwan as part of a $6.5 billion arms package that also includes eight warships the receiving nation plans to upgrade for the Aegis Combat System with the capacity for carrying Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) ship-based anti-ballistic missiles.
On January 22 head of the Pentagon’s Central Command General David Petraeus told an audience at the private Institute for the Study of War that two warships equipped with the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System “are in the Gulf at all times now.”  A news report on the same day remarked “That statement – along with the stationing of other U.S. air defense assets in the region – sends a strong signal to Iran….” 
The New York Times reported on January 30 that the U.S. was expediting the deployment of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) interceptor missiles to four Persian Gulf nations – Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates – thereby paralleling the combination of sea-based Aegis and land-based Patriot missiles intended for the Taiwan Strait aimed at China and in the Baltic Sea targeting Russia. The Gulf deployments are intended for use against Iran.
“One senior military officer said that General Petraeus had started talking openly about the Patriot deployments about a month ago, when it became increasingly clear that international efforts toward imposing sanctions against Iran faced hurdles….”