Chinese man detained for illegal entry into Taiwan waters

A Chinese man in a rubber boat was intercepted by coast guard officers in Taiwan’s territorial waters Sunday and is now being held in a quarantine facility, according to the Coast Guard Administration (CGA).

The man was spotted near the Coast of Lieyu Township by the guards, Focus Taiwan reported citing the CGA. When the rubber dingy was intercepted, its lone occupant, a man his 50s, said he had sailed from the nearby Chinese city of Xiamen in pursuit of freedom and democracy in Taiwan, according to the CGA. The CGA said it detained the man and notified the Kinmen County health department and other relevant units about his attempted illegal entry into Taiwan. In keeping with Taiwan’s COVID-19 regulations, the man was taken to a quarantine facility in Kinmen, where he will be monitored for the required 14-day period, after which he will be handed over to the Kinmen District Prosecutors Office, the CGA said. One of the most militarised territorial waters of the world, the Taiwan Strait is patrolled by both the Chinese and Taiwanese navies.

Tensions between Taiwan and China have been growing in recent months, as Beijing has stepped up air and naval drills around the self-ruled island, which the Communist Party regards as part of its territory and has vowed to “reunify” with mainland China, by force if necessary. On the other hand, Taipei, has countered the Chinese aggression by increasing strategic ties with democracies including the US, which has been repeatedly opposed by Beijing. China has threatened that “Taiwan’s independence” means war.