In the wake of the intensifying China-Taiwan dispute and the escalating tensions around it, Taiwan on Tuesday deployed its fleet of the US manufactured Apache attack helicopters. This move comes amid the growing military threats from China which is taking an aggressive stance on the Taiwan conflict. Taiwan procured 30 Apache AH-64E helicopters from the US under the USD 6.5 billion worth of arms deals.
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29 of the 30 helicopters have been commissioned as one of them was wrecked during training in 2014 when it crash-landed on a building. AH-64E helicopters are also popularly known as the ‘tank killers’ and the arms deals between the US and Taiwan was signed in 2008 leaving China infuriated. China has always been angered by any purchase of arms and military equipment by the self-governed Island for China believes that Taiwan is a part of China which needs to be reunited.
At present, the tensions between China and Taiwan are escalating as China is posing greater military threats to Taiwan. Taiwan is making sure that it pushes for enhanced military defence mechanisms to confront China. China has magnified the military and diplomatic pressure on Taiwan in the last 2 years hence raising security concerns for Taiwan.
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AH-64E helicopters were given to Taiwan by the US in 2013-2014 and Taiwan was the first nation outside the US to use the advanced version of the Apache attack helicopters. Later the helicopters were also sold to the UK and Japan. Military experts describe AH-64E helicopters as the world’s most advanced multi-role combat helicopters.
The President of Taiwan said during the ceremony that the AH-64E helicopters present a very strong line of defence. Taiwan also unleashed the world’s first female pilot for the AH-64E helicopters, Yang-Yun-Hsuan. She is a major in the army and is the daughter of a pilot.
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