21 warplanes, five Chinese navy ships tracked around Taiwan Strait

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Taiwan tracked 21 fighter jets and five Chinese navy ships across the country with eight jets crossing the center line of the Taiwan Strait.

Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense said it tracked 17 Chinese military aircraft and five ships across the country as of 5 p.m. Friday, Taiwan News reported.

Of the 17 People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) fighter jets, eight crossed the median line over the Taiwan Strait, the military said. The aircraft were four Xi’an JH-7 fighter-bombers, two Sukhoi Su-30 fighters and two Shenyang J-11 jets.

The JH-7 and Su-30 jets crossed the center line at its northern end, while the two J-11 fighters did so at the southern end.

The ministry said it has tasked combat air patrols (CAPs), navy ships and air defense missile systems to monitor and respond to Chinese activities reported by Taiwan News.

China stepped up its antics in the Taiwan Strait after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited the self-governing island.

During the watch, the military tracked 51 Chinese warplanes over the Taiwan Strait and a Chinese missile destroyer near an area where Taiwan was testing missiles.

Tensions were further heightened on Sunday when another US congressional delegation visited Taiwan and amid this a social media post by China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) showed footage from the Penghu Islands suggesting that his jets were on the doorstep of Taiwan.

Tung Pei-lun, vice chief of operations staff for the Taiwanese air force, denied that recent Chinese exercises in the Taiwan Strait had come close to Penghu, saying Beijing was using “war cognitive”.

The PLA’s Eastern Theater Command (ETC), the unit responsible for the region that includes the Taiwan Strait, has held navy and air force drills around Taiwan as a demonstration of force after Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei earlier this month.

Amid heightened tensions in the Taiwan Strait, the United States plans to take action in the coming weeks and months to counter China’s military and economic activity around Taiwan.

Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan this month sparked a new round of tension in the region. Since the US delegation’s visit, Beijing has launched large-scale military exercises around the island, which have included live-fire drills and military aircraft overflights near Taiwan’s airspace.

At a Wednesday press briefing, State Department spokesman Ned Price said the United States would continue to take resolute but also calm steps to maintain peace and stability in the face of continued efforts to Beijing to undermine the status quo.

“These milestones in various areas will unfold over the coming weeks and months as we recognize this challenge is long-term,” Price said during a press briefing.

(Only the title and image of this report may have been edited by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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