Taiwanese media has reported
that the US has sent personnel, including officials from Raytheon, to inspect Taiwan's PAC-3 air defense systems. Two batteries have been in place in Hualian and Taitung since earlier this year, replacing the older Hawk air defense system, and the inspection is being seen as a signal that the deployments may become permanent. Meanwhile, South Korea's deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD
) has started a debate
in Taiwan at the possible deployment of THAAD on the island. Defense Minister Feng Shih-kuan, however, has publicly voiced his opposition against a THAAD presence in Taiwan, saying the island had no need to be drawn into other countries’ conflicts.
Attack drones will be deployed to South Korea by the US
as tensions rise on the peninsula over the deployment of THAAD
. The decision to deploy the MQ-1C Grey Eagles
to Korea come as part of a wider plan to deploy a company of the attack drones with every division in the US Army. Speaking on the announcement, United States Forces Korea spokesman Christopher Bush added that the Grey Eagle's will provide a "significant intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capability to US Forces Korea and our ROK partners." These ongoing tensions are taking place at a time when South Korean voters are scheduled to go to the polls on May 9 in order to elect a new president following the impeachment and dismissal last week of its former president, Park Geun-hye, and policy on North Korea and the THAAD system are likely to be contentious issues in the campaign.