Taiwan would consider hosting US warships on Taiping Island
Taiwan's defense minister said the country would consider allowing US ships access if requested.
TAIPEI, TAIWAN — Taiwan would consider allowing U.S. warships access to the largest of the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea for regional security purposes if requested by Washington.
In response to a hypothetical question at the legislature on Monday, Taiwan's defense minister, Yen Teh-fa, said Taiwan could allow U.S. vessels to dock at Taiping Island, according to the SCMP.
Six different countries including Taiwan and China lay claims to parts of the South China Sea.
At the parliament panel meeting, Yen said Taiwan would consider allowing US vessels access to Taiping Island for humanitarian or regional security grounds if it were in the best interests of the country.
According to lawmaker John Chiang, the regular presence of US aircraft carrier groups in international waters of the South China Sea were aimed at keeping China's military expansion in check.
The U.S. Navy routinely conducts freedom of navigation sorties in international waters near the islets of the South China Sea, which draws heavy protests from China.
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