TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Harpoon missile bases, once constructed, will have other functions, military officials said on Friday (Nov. 10).
The bases will have offices, living quarters, garages, and peacetime training facilities, the officials said. There will be no noise pollution, and proper safety precautions will be taken, they added.
Only during wartime or special circumstances, will the mobile Harpoon missiles rapidly deploy to tactical positions to defend Taiwan’s coast, CNA reported.
The military intends to build six Harpoon missile bases. These will be in Yunlin’s Huwei Township, Kaohsiung, Pingtung, and other locations — but there has been opposition to the plan.
Yunlin County councilors Lee Ming-che (李明哲) and Huang Wen-hsiang (黃文祥) protested the base during a council meeting on Nov. 7. They pointed out that Huwei is in the heart of Yunlin and host to several construction projects already underway.
Since Harpoon missiles are offensive military facilities and the location of the planned base is adjacent to the high-speed rail station, the councilors called on the county government to oppose the base and urged the MND to consider local development and the safety of residents.
The Navy Command has said it hopes the naval exhibition on Nov. 11 at Kaohsiung’s Sin Pin Pier can give the public a better understanding of its efforts in preparing for war. The event aims to foster an appreciation for national defense among Taiwanese, it said.
Taiwan’s Yu Shan landing platform dock, the Ta Chiang corvette, and a new fast patrol boat will be making their public debut at the exhibition.
Aside from the ships, the special exhibition will have an M109 assault boat, dual-mounted Stinger missiles, a Humvee, a sniper rifle, and a model of the Hsiung Feng III anti-ship missile on display. The event will also feature the Albatross II drone, Cardinal III unmanned aircraft system, and a loitering munition. The military’s martial arts teams and drum corps will perform as well.
In 2020, the US approved the sale of 100 sets of shore-mounted Harpoon missile systems to Taiwan. This package included 400 RGM-84L-4 Harpoon Block II missiles, 4 RTM-84L-4 Harpoon Block II maneuver missiles, 100 Harpoon Coastal Defense System Launcher Transporter Units, 25 radar trucks, and other related equipment and logistics support. Taiwan has been coordinating with the US since last year to try to get Washington to adjust arms shipments, in the hope of having more than half of the missiles within three years and the remaining missiles before the end of 2029.