Taiwan President Sees Jump in China Missile Buildup བོད་སྐད།

Taiwan's President Chen Shui-bian says China now has more than a thousand missiles aimed at the island.

In his final New Year's Day address Tuesday before stepping down in May, Mr. Chen said the number of short-range ballistic missiles deployed against Taiwan had grown from 200 in the year 2000, to one-thousand-328 today.

Beijing has not commented on Mr. Chen's speech.

Mr. Chen said China is also preparing to designate an "air defense identification zone" in the Taiwan Strait and open a new civil air route along the median of the Strait.

The Taiwan leader accused Beijing of attempting to unilaterally change the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

China regards Taiwan as part of its territory and has said it is prepared to use force if the island declares formal independence.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.