Mainland Chinese warships have pressed deep into Taiwan’s territorial waters for the first time as Beijing kept up military and diplomatic pressure on the island over US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit . On Saturday, the third day of its unprecedented military drills around Taiwan, state news agency Xinhua released a photo taken the previous day showing a marine monitoring the coastline of Taiwan. While the People’s Liberation Army did not specify where it was taken, a white structure that appeared to be the chimney of the Ho-Ping power plant in Hualien country on the east coast of Taiwan could be identified. Xinhua also released footage of a PLA fighter jet flying along the coastline of the island. It means that not only have the PLA warships and warplanes crossed the median line dividing the Taiwan Strait, they are apparently deep into the 12 nautical miles (22.2km) of Taiwan’s territorial space – a first in the PLA’s history. Xinhua said the PLA had simulated assaults on Taiwan in designated areas to the north, southwest and east of the island on Saturday. Can things get worse as US-China common ground shrinks over Taiwan row? The island’s defence ministry detected 20 batches of warplanes and 14 warships operating around its waters and airspace on Saturday. It said 14 PLA warplanes – 10 Su-30 and four J-11 fighters – had crossed the median line between Taiwan and the mainland. The massive military exercises will end at noon on Sunday. Beijing launched the drills in response to a visit by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last week. Pelosi, second in the presidential line of succession, is the highest-ranking US official in 25 years to visit the self-governed island. Beijing sees it as part of its territory and issued repeated warnings against the trip, which it regards as a serious violation of its sovereignty. On Friday Beijing sanctioned Pelosi and her family and put on hold its cooperation with the United States in a number of areas, from military dialogue to fighting climate change. The following Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi warned the US not to “stir up a bigger crisis” as Washington stepped up its military deployment in the region. “The usual tactic of the US is that they first create the problems and then use them to achieve their goal. But this approach will not work for China,” Wang said on the sidelines of a meeting of foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Cambodia. “We must solemnly warn the US not to act rashly or create a bigger crisis.” PLA sends in 100+ warplanes on day 1 of military drills near Taiwan The US has denied it wants to change the status quo in the Taiwan Strait and has accused China of overreacting to Pelosi’s visit. The White House summoned Chinese ambassador Qin Gang shortly after Beijing imposed sanctions on Pelosi and stopped cooperation with the US on various issues. US national security spokesman John Kirby said Beijing’s actions “were a concern, of course, not only to us but to Taiwan and the rest of the world”. He added: “We wanted to make sure that [Qin] knew how much the international community was also opposed to this.” He said many US allies and regional partners were “expressing their concerns” over what Beijing was doing “and making it clear that, like us, they don’t find this acceptable behaviour”. An opinion piece by Communist Party mouthpiece People’s Daily , quoting the foreign ministry statistics, said more than 160 countries had expressed support for the one-China principle after Pelosi made her “provocative” visit. The principle holds that Taiwan is part of China. “Over 80 per cent of the global population, or 90 per cent of the countries, have sided with China this time. We are on the right side of history. While on the other side, you have the US and a handful of its lackeys,” the article said. The visit has plunged the already tense relationship between the two countries to a new low. The Chinese side has refused to engage after US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley have made multiple calls to their Chinese counterparts, according to Politico. Wang told a press conference China’s reaction was justified. “Our military drills are open, transparent and professional, in line with domestic law, international law and international practice. They aim to warn the perpetrators and punish Taiwan independence forces,” Wang said. “If the principle of non-interference in internal affairs is ignored and abandoned … the United States will more recklessly treat and bully other countries, especially small and medium-sized countries, with its so-called power status.” Chinese state media also stepped up the rhetoric against Pelosi, with a scathing opinion piece from Xinhua accusing her of “six sins”, including damaging peace with her trip to Taiwan. The article also said her visit violated the three communiqués – the joint statements that form the basis of modern US-China ties – and lashed out at the US for “hollowing out” the one-China principle. Pelosi dismissed the claims, saying she visited Taiwan to support its democracy as Beijing was heightening cross-strait tensions. In Taiwan, President Tsai Ing-wen vowed not to back down in the face of the increasing pressure from across the strait. In a post on Facebook, she condemned Beijing for conducting massive military operations “in one of the busiest traffic corridors” in the world. Why Beijing thinks Pelosi’s Taiwan visit is not like Gingrich in 1997 Tsai asked the Taiwanese people to stay calm, saying: “We will only become more united. Our military is doing their best.” More than 351 flights were affected by the military exercises on Saturday, including 65 that were cancelled, according to the island’s transport ministry.