Taiwan war fears grow as China launches new 100,000-ton aircraft carrier with massive bomber fleet to match US Navy | The Sun

CHINA has launched a huge new aircraft carrier capable of carrying a fleet of warplanes that matches the power of US Navy for the first time.

The unveiling of 100,000 ton Fujian comes as fears of war over Taiwan mount in the wake of China's president Xi Jinping ordering a widening of the country's military operations.

At a lavish ceremony at a shipyard in Shanghai, the Type 003 carrier was revealed as water jets sprayed over its deck while multi-coloured streamers and smoke were released.

Dozens of navy personnel lined up in front of the ship and sang the national anthem at the ceremony, which was attended by senior military officials.

Ridzwan Rahmat, a Singapore-based analyst with the defence intelligence company Janes described the Fujian as an “important milestone” in China’s capability.

A senior Taiwanese defence official said that with the new carrier China was flagging to the region its intentions about projecting power well into the Pacific.


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In the future, China wants directly penetrate beyond Japan and the Pacific waters off Taiwan's east coast, said the official.

“The launch of the new carrier is a defiant statement,” they said.

It comes as Xi Jinping signed a decree allowing for “non-war” uses of the military, which raised concerns that paves the way for war with Taiwan.

The new law will allow China’s military to “safeguard China's national sovereignty, security and development interests".

Experts have said the move mimics Vladimir Putin’s tactics in the run up to his invasion of Ukraine, which he declared to be a “special military operation”.

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Eugene Kuo Yujen, an analyst with Taiwan's Institute for National Policy Research, said: “I think it's definitely a copy of Putin's 'special operation' language.

"And after what happened in Ukraine, it sends a very threatening signal to Taiwan, Japan and the surrounding countries in the South China Sea."

The Fujian will join China’s two other carriers, the Shandong, commissioned in late 2019, and the Liaoning, which China bought second-hand from Ukraine in 1998 and refitted domestically.

It’s widely believed to boast more advanced aircraft-launching technology known as an electromagnetic catapult system, or EMALS.

That means that the ship will be able to launch a broader variety of aircraft, including the FC-31 new generation of stealth fighters which will have heavier bomb loads and more fuel.

This will also allow for transport and airborne early warning and control aircraft to use the ship.

China is still honing its ability to operate the carriers, and integrate them into battle groups, something the US Navy has been doing for decades.

China’s navy has been modernising for more than a decade to become more of a “blue water” force capable of operating globally rather than being restricted to close to the Chinese mainland.

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Xi has vowed to build a "fully modern" force rivalling the United States military by 2027.

But while the new ship represents a technological achievement for the China, its fleet is still some way off that of the United States which has 11 aircraft carriers.

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