Friday, September 27, 2013

Taiwanese Navy holds rare SM-2 live-fire exercise; receives first P-3C

Despite being held close to Yonaguni Island, Taiwan denied speculation that the exercise sent any political message to Japan, which is in the process of deploying troops there

The Taiwanese Navy conducted a rare Standard Missile 2 (SM-2) launch on September 26 during a live-fire exercise simulating an attack by China, one day after receiving delivery of the first of 12 refurbished P-3C maritime surveillance aircraft from the U.S.

The exercise, which was open to the media, was held 60 nautical miles off the coast of Hualien in northeastern Taiwan. One SM-2 (RIM-66) surface-to-air missile, fired from the 10,500-tonne Kidd-class (Keelung-class) destroyer Makong, successfully intercepted a drone target approximately 80 seconds into flight. This was the first time since the annual Han Kuang exercises in 2007 that Taiwan test-fired the SM-2, the most modern ship-borne air interceptor fielded by the Taiwanese Navy.

My article, published today in The Diplomat, continues here.

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