China conducts drill around Taiwan for 2nd day, bombers cross defense line

China's state-run media say the country's military sent bombers over waters east of Taiwan to carry out mock attacks. The bombers reportedly crossed what Beijing considers a defense line against the United States.

The military's Eastern Theater Command said on Friday that it continued a two-day exercise that began the previous day in areas surrounding Taiwan.

The command released a video that shows what appear to be preparations for a missile launch.

China Central Television reported that the bombers went beyond the island chain and conducted mock attacks on important targets in waters east of Taiwan.

The island chain refers to what Beijing calls "the First Island chain", which is China's defense line in a contingency over Taiwan.

The military has stressed that its units will seamlessly work together on both sides of the line.

The Chinese Coast Guard also said on Friday that it conducted a drill in waters east of Taiwan.

A Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson said in a statement that "the military drills around Taiwan aim to crack down on the arrogance of 'Taiwan independence' separatist forces."

He also said the drills "deter the interference and intervention of external forces, which are completely reasonable, lawful, legitimate and necessary."

China is believed to be stepping up pressure on new Taiwan President Lai Ching-te by focusing its military drill east of Taiwan. That area faces the Pacific, a key US support route for Taiwan. Lai is seeking closer ties with the US.

Lai said on social media on Friday that he held an online meeting with Defense Minister Koo Li-Hsiung to be briefed on Taiwanese military's responses to the drill.

Lai said he and the military totally know all the movements of the Chinese military, and can respond immediately and appropriately to ensure the safety of Taiwan and its people.

He also said people can provide their biggest support to the military by uniting, cooperating and responding to external movements.