Paraguayan President Abdo, Tsai observe military drill

10/09/2018 02:54 PM
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Taipei, Oct. 9 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and President Mario Abdo Benitez of Paraguay observed an air and ground military drill at the Army's Aviation and Special Forces Command base in Taoyuan on Tuesday.

The army carried out a field training exercise that simulated a counterattack by air and ground forces against invaders seeking to take control of the military base in Lungtan, Taoyuan.

According to the army, 566 military personnel took part in the exercise, which involved the deployment of seven indigenous armored vehicles known as CM-32 Clouded Leopard, as well as CM-11 Brave Tiger tanks, on the battlefield.

In the air, 25 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters, UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters, OH-58D Kiowa Warriors and CH-47D Chinooks were deployed, along with four F-16 fighter jets and four Indigenous Defense Fighters, the Army said.

After the non-live fire drill, Tsai and Abdo Benitez toured the Apache helicopter hangar on the base and posed for a photo with the military personnel, wearing flight jackets.

The drill was staged as a demonstration in preparation for a quarterly training project that will begin next year with the aim of boosting the military's combat readiness against external threats, Ministry of National Defense spokesman Chen Chung-chi (陳中吉) said.

He said Abdo Benitez's presence at the drill was reflective of deepening relations between Taiwan and Paraguay.

Abdo Benitez arrived in Taiwan Oct. 7 on a six-day state visit that will include his participation in the National Day celebrations Wednesday.

(By Yu Kai-hsiang and Shih Hsiu-chuan)


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