Beijing, (EFE).- The war in Ukraine has caused delays in the shipment of weapons from the United States to Taiwan, which is also considering canceling a purchase of anti-submarine helicopters from that country due to their high price, official sources reported today.
In a parliamentary appearance collected by the official CNA agency, Taiwanese Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng said that the US notified Taipei of a possible delay in the delivery of 250 Stinger missiles due to the high demand for weapons from Ukraine. to defend against the Russian invasion.
The minister stated that his department is pressing for the deadlines and terms stipulated in the supply contract to be met. “Due to the war between Russia and Ukraine, we have been told that the delivery of the Stingers could be delayed,” said Chiu, who assured that his Ministry has “contingency plans” to ensure that these setbacks do not slow down the defensive capacity of the Taiwanese military.
The United States approved this missile sale in 2019 with a 2026 delivery deadline, according to CNA.
This possible delay marks the second time this week that the Taiwanese Ministry of Defense has warned of delays in US arms supplies, after it reported on Monday that an order for M109A6 Paladin self-propelled howitzers would not be delivered on time due to lack of productive capacity.
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The Paladins’ contract called for eight to be delivered next year, 16 in 2024 and as many in 2025, but the US has warned Taipei that it would not be able to deliver the first of the deliveries until 2026 at the earliest.
According to the Minister of Defense, the US country proposed other alternatives that the Taiwanese government is evaluating, among which is the Himars light multiple missile launch system.
In addition, Chiu advanced that there is a possibility that a possible purchase from the US of twelve MH-60R anti-submarine helicopters will be canceled due to its high price, an operation for which the Taiwanese Navy had budgeted the equivalent of 1,150 million dollars with in order to replace its obsolete current fleet.
Taiwan is one of the main reasons for the conflict between Beijing and Washington, mainly because the North American country is Taiwan’s main arms supplier and could be its greatest military ally in a hypothetical war with China.
China, which claims sovereignty over the island, has considered Taiwan a rogue province since the Kuomintang nationalists withdrew there in 1949 after losing the civil war against the communists.