Taiwan’s air force has once again scrambled fighter jets to repel a largescale Chinese military aircraft incursion of the island’s defense zone.
Though this has become a near weekly occurrence at this point, Sunday’s Chinese incursion was notably large, with 19 aircraft including nuclear capable bombers entering Taiwan’s air defense identification zone.
“The latest Chinese mission involved 10 J-16 and four Su-30 fighters, as well as four H-6 bombers, which can carry nuclear weapons, and an anti-submarine aircraft, Taiwan’s Defence Ministry said,” according to NBC.
The report continues of Taiwan’s response: “Taiwanese combat aircraft were dispatched to warn away the Chinese aircraft, while missile systems were deployed to monitor them, the ministry said.”
The breach reportedly happened near the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Island, which is the northernmost islet of the South China Sea.
While 19 Chinese aircraft is among the larger incursions, it comes just short of the 20 that breached the island’s defense zone last March.
19 PLA aircraft (Y-8 ASW, H-6*4, J-16*10 and SU-30*4) entered #Taiwan’s southwest ADIZ on September 5, 2021. Please check our official website for more information: https://t.co/4krSmean3X pic.twitter.com/1sV3OA4ode
— 國防部 Ministry of National Defense, R.O.C. 🇹🇼 (@MoNDefense) September 5, 2021
Beijing began sending more frequent and larger jet formations following the Biden administration earlier signaling to the small democratic-run island that it would continue Trump’s policy of making large weapons transfers to Taipei, something which Beijing has vehemently protested, calling it a severe violation of the ‘One China’ policy.