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Pentagon chief says China ops near Taiwan resemble ‘rehearsals’

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Washington (AFP) – US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said Saturday that recent extensive Chinese military operations near Taiwan resembled “rehearsals” and he reaffirmed Washington’s strong support for Taipei. President Joe Biden’s Pentagon chief said the United States remained committed to supporting “Taiwan’s ability to defend itself.” In a speech devoted largely to an array of challenges posed by an increasingly confident China, he underlined Washington’s “real differences” with Beijing. Austin was speaking at a national defense forum at the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif…

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