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Taiwan F-16s armed with MK-84 bombs for invasion war games

Convoys pass through Taitung City reportedly carrying locally made missiles

Hsiung Feng III missile test. (National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology photo) 

Hsiung Feng III missile test. (National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology photo) 

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — In preparation for this month’s Han Kuang 36 war games, Taiwanese F-16 jets have been armed with 2,000-pound bomb loads, while missile transports were spotted in the streets of Taitung, reports said Wednesday (July 1).

The moves came amid repeated incursions by Chinese warplanes into the country’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) and as China implemented a draconian national security act in Hong Kong Wednesday.

Several F-16 fighter jets each carrying two MK-84 bombs took off from Chia Shan Air Force Base in Hualien County in the morning for drills over the ocean aimed at repelling an invasion of Taiwan by enemy ships, CNA reported.

The exercises prepared the groundwork for the July 13-17 Han Kuang 36 drills which will feature the repulsion of a mock landing on Chia Nan Beach in Taichung City and of attacks on Taichung Harbor and on Ching Chuan Kang Air Force Base in the same city.

Separately, on Tuesday (June 30) night and Wednesday noon, residents of Taitung City saw military convoys driving through their streets, with trucks carrying missile installations, the Liberty Times reported.

The night convoy transported Sky Bow III surface-to-air missiles, while a motorcade of more than 50 vehicles accompanied by a police escort early Wednesday afternoon apparently featured 10 trucks carrying Hsiung Feng III anti-ship cruise missiles, according to the newspaper.

The Liberty Times added that military sources were reluctant to comment on the sightings.