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80,000 tons of Chinese diplomacy

China has launched a third aircraft carrier, a Type 003 christened the Fujian, firming up its place in an elite group of countries led by the United States that are able to deploy huge seaborne military airports. The Fujian–which follows the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s Liaoning carrier in 2012 and the Shandong in 2019–will “enhance the ability to safeguard world peace,” said a Chinese Embassy spokesman in Washington. Taiwan, which has come under intense Chinese political and military pressure aimed at unifying the island with the mainland, views the vessel differently than Beijing.