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MISSILE TESTS WON’T FAZE TAIWAN

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Taiwan will not react to planned new Chinese missile tests nearby in the East China Sea by changing the status of its armed forces, state-funded Broadcasting Corporation of China reported on Thursday.

"The Defense Ministry's Spokesman's Office said we will not raise or change our combat readiness. It also said that the guided missiles this time are not M2 guided missiles," the radio said.China announced on Thursday a second round of rare guided-missile tests in less than one month in the East China Sea, just north of the Nationalist-ruled island.

"The Defense Ministry said the September Hua Hsing exercise will not be affected by communist China's missile tests this time," the radio quoted an unnamed official at the Defense Ministry Spokesman's office as saying.

Taiwan has said it will hold a military exercise before the island's Oct. 10 National Day, and the Defense Ministry has described the exercise, to be held in southern Taiwan, as a routine military inspection.

China's last guided-missile tests in late July in the sea north of Taiwan triggered massive fears across the island, plunging the stock market and tumbling the Taiwan dollar.

"This really worries me. Two missile tests in such a short time," political scientist Hu Fo said.