The live-fire exercises by the Chinese military came in the wake of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan earlier this week.
Marles said China has violated the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea by launching ballistic missiles.
“The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea is a fully understood treaty and an accepted part of the architecture of the global rules-based order,” said Marles,
“How it applies to the Taiwan Strait is also clear. And it applies to the Taiwan Strait as well.”
His comments contradict China’s claim that the strait is not international waters.
Defense expert Malcolm Davis, of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, said: Weekend today this morning it was important for the federal government to support Taiwan.
He said Taiwan was a liberal democracy, a major manufacturer of technological components, and occupied a strategically vital position in the Asia-Pacific region.
“I think it’s important for us to strengthen relations with Taiwan … and also to recognize that the Taiwanese people have the right to choose their own future,” Davis said.
China began threatening military exercises off the coast of Taiwan on Thursday, lasting until tomorrow.
Some missiles were sent over Taiwan itself, Chinese officials told state media — a significant increase in China’s threat from the island.
Secretary of State Penny Wong reprimanded China yesterday for launching ballistic missiles.
She said the military exercises were “disproportionate and destabilizing”.
China accuses US of ‘navigation bullying’
The federal government has not supported or criticized Pelosi’s controversial visit to Taipei on Wednesday.