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Pelosi’s plane nears Taiwan, raising tension with China

This handout photo taken and released by Malaysia’s Department of Information, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, center, waves to media as she tours the parliament house in Kuala Lumpur, Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2022. (Malaysia’s Department of Information via AP)
This handout photo taken and released by Malaysia’s Department of Information, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, center, waves to media as she tours the parliament house in Kuala Lumpur, Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2022. (Malaysia’s Department of Information via AP)

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is headed for Taiwan on a visit that could significantly escalate tensions with Beijing, which claims the self-ruled island as its own territory.

Flight tracker sites show her plane readying for descent on the island.

Pelosi is on an Asian tour this week that is being closely watched to see if she will defy China’s warnings against visiting the island republic, a close US ally.

China has vowed to retaliate if Pelosi becomes the highest US elected official to visit Taiwan in more than 25 years, but has given no details. Speculation has centered on threatening military exercises and possible incursions by Chinese planes and ships into areas under Taiwanese control.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Washington’s betrayal “on the Taiwan issue is bankrupting its national credibility.”

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