- The Washington Times
Thursday, May 21, 2020

The U.S. is gearing up to sell $180 million of torpedoes to Taiwan, amid increasing tension between the U.S. and China, which claims Taiwan as a territory of its own.

The State Department on Wednesday approved the possible sale of eighteen MK-48 Mod6 Advanced Technology Heavy Weight Torpedoes and related equipment, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a press release.

“The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today,” the statement continued.

Although the U.S. does not officially recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation, Taiwan in recent days has become a sore subject between the U.S. and China after disputes over diplomatic privileges and its exclusion from the World Health Organization’s virtual assembly this week.

Taiwan is neither a full member of the United Nations, nor the WHO, but has previously been granted observer status at past summits.

While stopping short of naming China, which has sought to reunify itself with Taiwan, the DSCA said the proposed sale “will help improve the security of the recipient and assist in maintaining political stability, military balance, and economic progress in the region.”

They said the potential move “serves U.S. national, economic, and security interests by supporting the recipient’s continuing efforts to modernize its armed forces and to maintain a credible defensive capability.”

The proposed sale will soon head to Congress where the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will consider the transaction.

• Lauren Toms can be reached at lmeier@washingtontimes.com.

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