Taiwan and China military 'to meet'

Military from China and Taiwan to meet for first time in 60 years, Chinese media says.

    China has previously threatened to use force if Taiwan moves to declare independence [GALLO/GETTY]

    The China Daily gave no other details on who would take part in the meeting or what would be discussed.

    China has claimed sovereignty over Taiwan since the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949, when defeated Nationalist forces fled to the island.

    Sovereignty claim

    Ever since China has viewed Taiwan as a part of its territory awaiting reunification -  by force if necessary - and has previous labelled the country as a "renegade province".

    However, an improvement in relations has occurred since Ma Ying-jeou, the president, took office in Taiwan last May promising to boost the island's trade and tourism links with the mainland.

    Earlier this month, Taiwan's defence ministry said it planned to cut the size of its armed forces by more than a fifth by 2014 as a result of the warming relations with China.

    In December, the two sides inaugurated the first daily passenger flights across the Taiwan Strait along with other transport links.

    Nonetheless, Taiwan officials estimate China still has more than 1,000 missiles aimed at the island, and says it is continuing to expand its arsenal.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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