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A senior Taiwanese official in charge of a missile production program died of a heart attack in a hotel on Saturday, the institute where he worked said, as China conducts the largest military exercises in its history around the island.

Uyang Li-hsing, 57, was the vice president of the National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology, an army agency. According to the Taiwanese agency CNA, he traveled to the south of the country on business.

In a statement posted on its website, the institute confirmed that the person responsible was found unconscious on Saturday at a hotel in Hengchun, Pingtung County.

“A medical-legal examination determined that the cause of death was a myocardial infarction and angina pectoris,” according to the statement.

According to CNA, Uyang was in charge of supervising “the production of various types of missiles” and had assumed his position earlier this year.

The Taiwanese government is striving to speed up its missile production in the face of the threat of an invasion by China, which considers the island to be part of its territory.

China is carrying out massive military exercises around Taiwan in retaliation for a visit to the island this week by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

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