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US ICBM test launch, delayed over Taiwan situation, to be held soon — White House

According to the official, the delay will have no impact on US deterrence

WASHINGTON, August 4. /TASS/. The US military will hold a test launch of the Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), delayed earlier this week over tensions around Taiwan, a senior White House official has said.

"The United States will be resolute but also steady and responsible. We do not believe it is in our interest, Taiwan’s interest, the region’s interest to allow tensions to escalate further, which is why a long-planned Minuteman III ICBM test scheduled for this week has been rescheduled for the near future," White House Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the National Security Council John Kirby told reporters on Thursday.

"As China engages in destabilizing military exercises around Taiwan, the United States is demonstrating instead the behavior of a responsible nuclear power by reducing the risks of miscalculation and misperception," the official continued. "We will continue to demonstrate transparency in our US ballistic missile tests through timely notifications. That’s a practice that China has often rejected."

According to the official, the delay will have no impact on US deterrence.

"And the test will happen. It will be rescheduled for the near future," he said.

Kirby added that the date of the launch has already been set, but did not disclose it.

Tensions between Beijing and Taipei were sparked by US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan. Beijing had earlier warned Washington of consequences if the visit took place. China announced plans to hold large-scale military drills around Taiwan right after Pelosi’s arrival in Taipei.

Taiwan has been governed by its local administration since 1949 when the remaining Kuomintang forces led by Chiang Kai-shek (1887-1975) fled to the island after suffering a defeat in China’s civil war. Since then, Taiwan has preserved the flag and some other symbols of the Republic of China that had existed in mainland China before the Communists came to power. Beijing regards the island as one of its provinces.