US Navy guided missile destroyer sails through Taiwan Strait

Thursday, April 08, 2021

A U.S. Navy destroyer transited the Taiwan Strait on Wednesday, the fourth by a U.S. battleship since President Joe Biden assumed office in January, CNA reports.

USS John S. McCain (DDG 56), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, conducted "a routine Taiwan Strait transit April 7 (local time) through international waters in accordance with international law," a press statement by the U.S. 7th Fleet said.

"The ship's transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the U.S. commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific. The United States military will continue to fly, sail, and operate anywhere international law allows," it added.

U.S. warships have made similar passages via the waterway separating Taiwan and China on three occasions before Wednesday since Biden took office on Jan. 20; the USS John S. McCain on February 4, the USS Curtis Wilbur on February 24, and the USS John Finn on March 10, all Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers.

Meanwhile, Taiwan's military confirmed the passage of an American destroyer without naming the vessel.

"A U.S. destroyer sailed from south to north through the Taiwan Strait," the Ministry of National Defense (MND) said in a statement, adding that the military monitored the vessel's movements and the situation in the surrounding area remained normal during the transit.