China Blasts Apple, Amazon for References to Taiwan and Hong Kong

Army members march to the flagpole during the flag-raising ceremony at the Tiananmen Square on New Years Day Jan. 1 2019 in Beijing China

The U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) has published a new report warning that China's rapidly modernizing military poses a potent threat to security in Asia.

The nation is regarded by Beijing as a province of China which it allows to self-rule, for now at least.

"The PLA [People's Liberation Army] is acquiring a range of technologies to improve China's counterspace capabilities", the agency adds.

Speaking to reporters in Washington on Tuesday, a senior defense official admitted that he was anxious about China now having the confidence to pull off major military moves - such as invading Taiwan.

According to the report, China's military strategy reflects its drive to establish a coherent, unified approach to managing national security in a world where Beijing perceives that China's expanding interests have made it more vulnerable at home and overseas.

While the report acknowledges that China spends significantly less on defense than the some $700 billion invested by the USin 2018, it says Beijing enjoys an advantage due to the fact that "China has not had to invest in costly R&D of new technologies to the same degree as the United States".

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The United States is closely watching Chinese intentions toward Taiwan, concerned that Beijing's growing military prowess may increase the risk it could one day consider bringing the self-ruled island under its control by force, a USA official said on Tuesday.

According to the DIA report, China has been acquiring technology "by any means available" - and its military is now more advanced than ever. "Domestic laws forced foreign partners of Chinese-based joint ventures to release their technology in exchange for entry into China's lucrative market, and China has used other means to secure needed technology and expertise", Ashley said.

Chinese nationalists fled to Taiwan at the end of the civil war in 1949 when the Communists took control of mainland China, but as the island has transformed into one of the region's most vibrant democracies it has become increasingly assertive of its own identity.

"These countries continue to develop, test and proliferate sophisticated anti-satellite weapons to hold United States and allied space assets at risk", the Air Force report says.

Ashley listed China's most potent weapons, some of which are the most advanced in the world in their field.

"China also has developed the world's first roadmobile, anti-ship ballistic missile, a system specifically created to attack enemy aircraft carriers", it says.

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"China's military strategy remains focused on developing the capability to dissuade, deter, and if ordered, defeat a potential third-party intervention in regional conflicts", says the report.

And the Chinese leader added that "we make no promise to renounce the use of force".

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen refused to acknowledge a "one China" solution and said she will not back down, despite losing re-election to a more Beijing-friendly opponent.

China's territorial claims in the resource-rich South China Sea are driving major logistic developments in the Spratly and Paracel Islands.

Chinese soldiers ride in tanks as they pass in front of Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City in Beijing during a military parade on September 3, 2015. "I think that they are fairly comfortable with the progress they've made in building out this infrastructure down there, and then working on negotiations with the other claimant states over a longer term", the senior defense official said.

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