The Pentagon has directed the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan to remain in the area near Taiwan “to monitor the situation” as China launches missiles in the region, the White House announced on Thursday.
In addition, the U.S. has delayed a planned test of a Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile to avoid increasing tensions, National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby told reporters.
“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,” Kirby said of the decision.
The Reagan Carrier Strike Group is based in Japan and operates in the Western Pacific. In recent days the ship has sailed in the East China and Philippine seas.
“We will not seek, nor do we want, a crisis,” Kirby said. “At the same time, we will not be deterred from operating in the seas and the skies of the Western Pacific.”
The Minuteman test had been scheduled for this week at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and is being delayed for a short period, The Wall Street Journal first reported.