Taiwanese military Chief killed a week after Taiwanese govt declined China’s offer and a week before elections

In an incident that has created pandemonium across the world, a black hawk helicopter carrying Taiwanese chief of General staff, Gen. Shen Yi-ming,  smashed into a mountain near Taipei. The incident took place mere 10 minutes after the helicopter, UH-60M Black Hawk, took off from the air base at Taipei, carrying 13 senior officers from the Taiwanese defence forces, fell from the radar screen near Wulai area with dense forestation.

The crash has so far claimed 8 lives which also includes the Air Force Commander Hsiung Hou-chi.

According to Taiwanese ministry, the black hawk that crashed today was dedicated for search and rescue operations and had been inducted in 2018. Ostensibly, Taiwan and US had inked a deal worth $3.1 billion in 2010 for 60 UH-Ms.

The black hawk which crashed today. Pic credit: Economic Daily China

The crash has jeopardized Taiwanese elections for the President and lawmakers, which were to be conducted on January 11 this year. Just a few days ago, in a new year’s speech, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen , had declined Beijing’s offer of “one country, two systems” formula. China had recently been very vociferous about claiming Taiwan as it’s territory, whilst Taiwan continues to call itself an independent nation. The Chinese-Taiwanese relationship hit rock bottom after an anti-infiltration bill was passed by Taiwan last Tuesday. The bill comes with serious repercussions for those found indulging in lobbying, election influence, fake news dissemination and political contributions originating outside Taiwan.

Pic credit Reuters

Taiwan had already been passing through tumultuous times after China threatened it with a war, as it suspects the Taiwanese president of pushing for the island’s formal independence. A situation of war would have required Taiwanese forces to be ready, and now that the seniors officers have been eliminated a vacuum has been created in the higher echelons of Taiwanese forces.

Taiwanese government has presently halted the election campaigns for next three days as the nation mourns death of the officers.

 Gen. Shen Yi-ming who died in the crash

Article by Levina

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