TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A U.S. destroyer sailed through the Taiwan Strait on Friday (Sept. 17), marking the ninth time an American warship has done so this year.
The U.S. Navy Seventh Fleet issued a press release Friday stating that the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Barry (DDG 52) had traversed through the strait in accordance with international law. This move “demonstrates the U.S.’ commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific region,” the fleet said, adding that the U.S. military will fly, sail, and operate anywhere international law allows.
Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense said it was fully aware of the situation and noted the USS Barry had sailed through the strait from north to south. The last Taiwan Strait transit by U.S. forces occurred on Aug. 27, which involved the Arleigh Burke-class missile destroyer USS Kidd and coast guard cutter Munro.
The passage came as Taiwan wrapped up its five-day Han Kuang exercise, which focused on combat strength preservation, anti-landing live-fire drills, and combat readiness. President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) described the annual military exercise as "a test of military training” and an opportunity for Taiwan to demonstrate to the world its commitment to self-defense.