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Taiwan dismisses story about Chinese spy balloon over Presidential Office

Balloon was situated over the ocean, 40 km away from Taiwan coast

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Taiwan's military says a balloon allegedly passing over the Presidential Office was situated over the ocean 40 km from the coast. (Facebook, ...

Taiwan's military says a balloon allegedly passing over the Presidential Office was situated over the ocean 40 km from the coast. (Facebook, ...

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of National Defense on Friday (Feb. 10) dismissed allegations that a spy balloon was seen flying over the Presidential Office Building in Taipei.

In a story mentioned by the New York Times, Central Weather Bureau (CWB) Director-General Cheng Ming-dean (鄭明典) said a picture taken on Sept. 27, 2021 at 8:29 a.m. showed an unidentified balloon in the sky over the Presidential Office.

The photo showed the Judicial Yuan at bottom left, and the Presidential Office Building at bottom right, with the balloon a white spot nearly invisible in the middle, Cheng said.

However, the military said in a statement Friday that the object in the picture was situated about 40 kilometers away from the Taiwan coast over the ocean. While not commenting on the nature of the balloon, the ministry said China’s constant military activities were not helpful to cross-strait relations.

Beijing should shoulder its responsibility and refrain from harming peace and stability in the area, the statement said.

In February and March 2022, the Air Force monitored four balloons passing over Taiwan from west to east at an altitude of about 3,000 meters. It concluded they were scientific and meteorological in nature, the Liberty Times reported.