US, Canadian warships sail through Taiwan Strait

The US Navy says that one of its destroyers and a Canadian frigate have conducted a routine transit through the Taiwan Strait.

The US 7th Fleet announced on Saturday that its guided-missile destroyer, the USS Ralph Johnson, and the Royal Canadian Navy frigate, the HMCS Ottawa, jointly sailed through the strait.

The statement said the bilateral transit "demonstrates the commitment of the United States and our allies and partners to a free and open Indo-Pacific."

It also said, "Cooperation like this represents the centerpiece of our approach to a secure and prosperous region where aircraft and ships of all nations may fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows."

The move comes at a time when China is increasing military pressure on Taiwan.

The Chinese military reacted sharply. A spokesperson for the Eastern Theater Command of China's People's Liberation Army said its forces monitored the ships and handled the situation in accordance with the law and regulations.

The spokesperson added that its units will stay on high alert and firmly protect China's sovereignty and security as well as peace and stability of the region.