22 Chinese aircraft cross Taiwan Strait median line as PLA launches drills
Taipei, Aug. 4 (CNA) Twenty-two Chinese aircraft crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait on Thursday, the first day of live-fire drills held by China's military in multiple locations around Taiwan, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND).
The aircraft included 12 Sukhoi SU-30, eight Shenyang J-11 and two J-16 fighter jets, the ministry said.
Taiwan scrambled a combat air patrol, sent radio warnings, and deployed defense missile systems to track the Chinese military planes, it added.
The incursions took place as the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) kicked off four days of live-fire military drills in six maritime areas around Taiwan, in response to a visit by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that concluded on Wednesday.
The PLA also sent 22 aircraft across the Taiwan Strait median line on Wednesday.
During Thursday's drill, the PLA fired a total of 11 Dongfeng ballistic missiles that landed in waters near northern, southern and eastern parts of the island, the MND said.
According to the Japanese Defense Ministry, four of the missiles are believed to have flown over Taiwan before landing in Japan's exclusive economic zone.
However, Taiwan's MND would not confirm whether the missiles were fired over Taiwan, saying only that the military is using various early-warning and monitoring mechanisms to track missiles fired by the PLA and has activated related defense systems.
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