Chinese jets are getting closer and closer to Taiwan

China’s air force on Monday flew fighter jets across the unofficial line that divides the Taiwan Strait into separate Chinese and Taiwanese areas.

Taiwanese forces intercepted and “chased” the Chinese planes. But Beijing then made its point. The Chinese Communist Party has been raising the stakes for decades cold War between China and Taiwan.

The Chinese incursion was not random. It was a calculated response to a visit to Taiwan by Alex Azar, the US Secretary of Health. Azar landed in Taiwan on Sunday as part of the highest U.S. delegation to the island country in decades.

Chinese Air Force J-10 and J-11 fighters reportedly crossed the center line of the Taiwan Strait as Azar met Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen around 9 a.m. local time.

Xu Guangyu, senior adviser of the China Association for Arms Control and Disarmament, Told world times that Azar’s visit was a serious provocation. government property world times and the China Association for Arms Control and Disarmament are both spokespersons for the Communist Party of China.

The strait is only 90 miles wide at its narrowest point. The unofficial center line cuts roughly along its middle, meaning the Chinese pilots only had to travel 50 miles to make their case – a journey of just a few minutes. Chinese fighters probed the southwestern sector of Taiwan’s air defense identification zone.

Taiwanese air defense radars tracked the Chinese fighters, probably from the moment they took off. “In addition to issuing a warning, our reconnaissance and patrol aircraft were in full control throughout the course and led the [Chinese] fighter jets out of our airspace,” the Taiwanese Defense Ministry said. announcement.

It is unclear what types of fighters Taiwan has brought out to intercept the Chinese jets. In previous Chinese incursions into the same area, F-16s based in southern Taiwan have flown in to meet the intruders.

For decades, China has mostly respected the median. That changed in March 2019, when Chinese planes briefly crossed the line. It still happened several times. During a February incursion, a Chinese J-11 fighter escorting an H-6 bomber locked his radar on a Taiwanese F-16.

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