Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defence (MND) has claimed that 29 Chinese aircraft have entered its air defence identification zone (ADIZ) on 21 June.
According to the MND, the latest Chinese mission involved six H-6 bomber aircraft, two KJ-500 airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) and one Y-20 aerial refuelling aircraft, five J-11 and eight J-16 fighter aircraft.
Furthermore, the Chinese mission included one Y-9 early warning aircraft, one Y-8 electronic intelligence (ELNIT) aircraft, one Y-8 anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft and four Sukhoi Su-30 jets.
In response, Taiwan sent its combat aircraft, issued radio warnings, and deployed air defence missile systems to monitor the activities.
The MND also provided a map claiming that some of the Chinese aircraft flew north-east of the Pratas while an electronic warfare, bomber and intelligence-gathering aircraft flew into the Bashi Channel, which separates Taiwan from the Philippines and is part of the Luzon Strait in the Pacific Ocean.
The aircraft then returned to China using the same route.
Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu tweeted: “The latest large-scale exercise by the #PLA shows authoritarian #China’s military threat is more serious than ever. But there’s no way #Taiwan will cave in & surrender its sovereignty & democracy to the big bully. Not a chance! JW.”
China has reportedly been conducting such repeated missions in the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands and the southwestern part of Taiwan’s ADIZ.
In September last year, a similar mission was carried out by 23 Chinese aircraft in Taiwan’s ADIZ.
The latest mission was the second-largest incursion this year while the first was in January when 30 Chinese aircraft were reported to have entered Taiwan’s ADIZ.