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Size of the ROC's armed forces is to be cut further

TAIPEI -- A planned program to further cut the country's military personnel to below 200,000 by the end of 2019 will be formally implemented from next year, as Taiwan moves forward with its efforts to streamline the military, Defense Minister Yen Ming said.

The military is finalizing the details of the new downsizing program and it is scheduled to be formally implemented in July 2015, Yen told reporters.

He said the program will be carried out until 2019, with the goal of cutting the number of troops to between 170,000 and 200,000, from the 215,000 target for the end of 2014 under the current streamlining program.

The program is part of the military's effort to adjust the organization of Taiwan's defense apparatus and restructure the armed forces.

Meanwhile, Yen said that Taiwan will lodge a protest to China through communication channels over an incident in which Chinese surveillance aircraft intruded into Taiwan's air defense identification zone (ADIZ) four times a day earlier.

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