US Intelligence has determined that the Chinese spy balloon detected in US airspace last week is part of a broader surveillance program international army of the Asian giant that has operated for years, as revealed by ‘The Washington Post’.
The spy balloon program is led from the province of Hainan, an island in southern China, anonymous US government sources have detailed to the newspaper. The purpose of these artifacts is to obtain information about military installations in other countries and they have been observed on five continents.
Part of the balloons are operated by the Chinese Liberation Army air forces and have obtained military information in countries like Japan, India, Vietnam, Taiwan and the Philippines.
The first news in the US about the presence of the balloon in its skies placed the device over Montana, a sparsely populated state in the northwest of the country that concentrates a good number of nuclear silos.
The revelation about the balloon occurred amid rising tensions between the US and China, the two powers that dispute the global economic and geostrategic leadershipand led to the suspension of the visit to Beijing by the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken.
The balloon was shot down last weekend while flying over waters near North Carolina and authorities are working to recover and study its remains.
The Under Secretary of State, Wendy Sherman, held a meeting on Monday with 150 authorities from 40 embassies from around the world to report on the operations of these Chinese balloons. In the past, similar artifacts had been detected in places like Japan or Taiwanand the US has now recognized that they have also done so in recent years in Florida, Texas and in territories in the Pacific, Hawaii and Guam.