Taiwan found to have taken part in US multinational military exercise

NHK has learned that troops from Taiwan took part in a US-sponsored multi-national military exercise held in the mid-western state of Michigan for about one month from late July.

Sources have revealed that Taiwanese troops took part in Operation Northern Strike, an annual multi-national exercise hosted by the Michigan National Guard.

The size and other details of Taiwan's contingent are unknown.

The US Department of Defense said the purpose of the exercise is to train and prepare readiness to enhance the interoperability of allied forces.

This year's drill took place from July 23 to August 19.

US officials say about 7,000 troops took part, including those from US states and foreign forces.

The US National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal 2023 stipulates that "it is the sense of Congress that joint military exercises with Taiwan are an important component of improving military readiness."

It has also been revealed that Taiwan Air Force F16 fighter jet pilots were trained at a US Air Force base in the western state of Arizona.

Analysts say the administration of US President Joe Biden is trying to enhance the country's deterrence of China by involving Taiwan in its military exercises.