China fighter jets invade Taiwan’s air space

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39 warplanes belonging to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army invaded the air defense identification zone (ADIZ) of Taiwan, officials of the Taiwan Defense Ministry have said.

According to Taiwan, this latest invasion is the largest such incursion this year.

Taiwan and mainland China have been governed separately since the defeated Nationalists retreated to the island at the end of the Chinese civil war more than 70 years ago.

But China’s ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) views the self-ruled Island as part of its territory despite having never controlled it.

Beijing has not ruled out military force to take Taiwan and has kept pressure on the democratic island over the past few years with frequent warplane flights into Taiwan’s ADIZ.

The latest incursions were made by 24 J-16 fighter jets, 10 J-10 fighter jets, two Y-9 transport aircraft, two Y-8 anti-submarine warning aircraft, and one nuclear-capable H-6 bomber, the Taiwanese Defense Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

In response, the Taiwanese military issued radio warnings and deployed air defense missile systems to monitor the activities.

The incursions on Sunday marked the highest daily number of Chinese warplanes entering Taiwan’s ADIZ this year. The highest number of incursions ever recorded was on October 4 last year, when 56 military planes flew into the area on the same day.

The flights by the People’s Liberation Army aircraft came a day after the United States and Japanese navies put on a massive show of force in the Philippine Sea, putting together a flotilla that included two US Navy aircraft carriers, two US amphibious assault ships and a Japanese helicopter destroyer, essentially a small aircraft carrier.

Two US guided-missile cruisers and five destroyers were also part of the exercise. The Philippine Sea is the area of the Pacific Ocean east of Taiwan, between the self-ruled island and the US territories of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. The Navy did not say how close the flotilla was to Taiwan.

Aircraft fly over a US-Japan naval flotilla that included two US aircraft carriers in the Philippine Sea on Saturday.

Aircraft fly over a US-Japan naval flotilla that included two US aircraft carriers in the Philippine Sea on Saturday.

“Freedom at its finest! Nothing reaffirms our commitment to a #FreeandOpenIndoPacific like 2 Carrier Strike Groups, 2 Amphibious Ready Groups sailing alongside our close friends from the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force,” Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, commander of the US 7th Fleet based in Japan, said in a tweet.

A US Navy statement said the mass of warships was “conducting training to preserve and protect a free and open Indo-Pacific region.”

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