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Taiwan to hold live-fire anti-landing drill on outlying island

2013/04/16 21:59:16

Part of the Han Kuang exercises held in New Taipei Monday (Photo courtesy of the Military News Agency)

Taipei, April 16 (CNA) Taiwan will hold a live-fire anti-landing drill on the outlying island of Penghu Wednesday as part of its annual Han Kuang series of military exercises that will run through this week, according to the military.

President Ma Ying-jeou will make a personal inspection of the drill, accompanied by Gen. Yen Ming, chief of the general staff in the Ministry of National Defense, the ministry said.

The drill, set to last for nearly an hour, will feature the public debut of the indigenous Thunderbolt-2000 multiple rocket launcher system, delivered to the Army last year, the ministry said.

A total of 81 rockets will be fired from nine truck-mounted launchers, the ministry added.

This is the first time live ammunition has been included in the Han Kuang exercises since 2008, according to the ministry. The exercises, Taiwan's most important war games, involve the Army, the Air Force and the Navy and are designed to test their joint combat capabilities.

Other weapons in Wednesday's drill will include F-16A/B jet fighters, IDF fighters, F-5E fighters, a Chengkung-class frigate and Kuang Hua VI fast-attack boats, the military said.

AH-1W Super Cobra attack helicopters and OH-58D reconnaissance helicopters, along with M60A3 battle tanks, 155mm howitzers and 120-mm mortars, will also be deployed in the drill, which will simulate an attack by enemy forces.

A total of 21 types of weapons will be deployed and 7,682 military personnel will be involved, the ministry said.

The first part of this year's Han Kuang exercises is being held around the clock for five consecutive days and will conclude April 19. A second part will comprise computer-aided war games and is slated for July, the ministry said.

(By Elaine Hou)