Taiwan Requests U.S. Fighter Jets

asian defence and technology

Days after Chinese leader Hu Jintao leaves Washington, Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou is again calling on the United States to supply Taiwan with fighter aircraft. The U.S. approved a $6.4-billion U.S.-dollar arms deal last year, supplying weapons to Taiwan. But the deal left out the F-16 fighter aircraft the Taiwanese government had originally requested.

Taiwanese officials acknowledge that the Chinese regime has now tipped the balance in terms of military capability across the Taiwan Strait. Taiwan is eager to modernise its military and has already been attempting to buy new combat aircraft since 2006.

President Ma addressed the issue at a meeting with Raymond Burghardt, the United States’ top representative to Taiwan. Burghardt was in visiting Taiwan to brief Ma about Hu Jintao’s recent visit to the United States.

"There has been a military imbalance over the strait for a long time—that is our common concern, Taiwan has looked forward to F16 C/D fighters and we also hope to get diesel-electric submarines, not to enlarge our military hardware but to renew it. We have some old fighters and submarines, which are a disadvantage in Taiwanese defence." said Ma Ying-jeou, President of Taiwan.

China’s New Fighter Prompts Renewed F-16 Plea from Taiwan

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