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Chinese warship collided with Taiwanese Freighter, Coast Guard says

PortandTerminal.com, August 7, 2019

A Chinese warship collided with a Taiwanese freighter on the evening of July 31st. It happened roughly 20 nautical miles southeast of the Taiwanese-controlled island of Kinmen.

TAIPEI, TAIWAN – A Chinese warship collided with a Taiwanese freighter Wednesday evening, damaging the bulk carrier, Taiwan’s Coast Guard Administration said.

The collision highlights the risks of escalation amid growing tensions between China and Taiwan. This is especially a concern as Beijing is increasing its exercises in the region and boosting the presence of its naval assets.

The collision occurred around 20 nautical southeast of Taiwan-controlled Kinmen island off China’s southeast coast, according to a statement from the coast guard. No injuries were reported.

The statement identified the Chinese vessel as a People’s Liberation Army warship. The coast guard said they managed to make contact with the Chinese ship suspected of being involved in the crash but the captain declined to assist in an investigation into the incident.

The incident occurred on an established shipping lane after dark, Chen Chien-wen, a spokesman for the Kinmen Coast Guard, said by phone Thursday. Investigators are looking into how the collision occurred.

The U.S. has increased its number of transits by its warships through the Taiwan Strait this year, signalling its support for the island in the face of Chinese threats to reclaim Taiwan by force.

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