Taiwan denounces biggest Chinese incursion of the year in its air space

Beijing, Apr 13 (EFE).- Taiwan has denounced a new incursion by 25 Chinese military aircraft in its air defense zone, the most numerous so far this year at a time of tension between both sides.

The 25 aircraft entered Monday the southwestern part of Taiwan’s Defense Air Identification Zone (ADIZ), according to a brief statement published by the Taiwanese Defense Ministry on its website.

The statement said it involved 14 J-16 fighters, four J-10 fighters, four H-6K bombers, two Y-8 transport aircraft equipped with submarine detectors and a KJ-500 radar plane.

In response to the raid, the ministry dispatched “a fighter jet patrol, issued radio alerts and deployed defensive missile systems to monitor the activity” of Chinese aircraft.

According to Taiwanese state news agency CNA, this is the largest incursion in a single day so far this year, and exceeds the 20 Chinese combat aircraft that entered the Taiwanese ADIZ on Mar. 26.

The source said “although (incursions of this type) have occurred almost daily since mid-September 2020, when the Ministry of Defense began to report on these missions,” it was only recently that Beijing began to considerably increase the number of aircraft deployed in the Taiwan ADIZ.

Tensions between Beijing and Taipei increased considerably during the term of former United States President Donald Trump, who prioritized strengthening relations with Taiwan, including arms sales, despite the fact that in 1979 Washington broke off relations with Taipei.

Taiwan has been governed autonomously since 1949 — when the Kuomintang nationalists, after losing the civil war against the Communists, took refuge on the island — although Beijing claims sovereignty over it and has not ruled out the use of force to regain it. EFE


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