17 Chinese planes cross Taiwan Strait median line: MND

09/10/2022 10:02 PM
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Graphic: Ministry of National Defense
Graphic: Ministry of National Defense

Taipei, Sept. 10 (CNA) A total of 17 Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) planes crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait on Saturday, according to Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND).

The MND said that 43 Chinese military aircraft and nine naval ships had been detected in the vicinity of Taiwan on Saturday, adding that it had scrambled combat air and naval patrols and deployed defensive missile systems in response.

Information released by the MND showed that nine Sukhoi SU-30, four Chengdu J-10, and four Shenyang J-16 fighter jets belonging to the PLA crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait.

The nine SU-30s crossed the median line from near northern Taiwan, while the J-10s and J-16s crossed off the southwestern portion of the island.

Meanwhile, a Y-8 anti-submarine warfare plane also flew into the southwestern part of Taiwan's air defense identification zone (ADIZ), accompanied by a long-range high-altitude Harbin BZK-005 UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle), according to the MND.

Both the plane and the drone were detected in the southwestern part of Taiwan's ADIZ.

The MND did not release the flight paths of the other planes.

Taiwan's Defense Ministry has been posting information about Chinese planes entering Taiwan's ADIZ since Sept. 17, 2020, amid increasingly frequent incursions by Chinese military aircraft.

China stepped up its military maneuvers in early August this year after the visit of U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Aug. 2 and 3, holding live-fire drills in six locations around Taiwan.

Many Chinese warplanes, including the 14 on Thursday, began making regular flights across the median line of the Taiwan Strait since Pelosi's visit.

The median line was previously observed by both Taipei and Beijing as an unofficial border, and crossing it has been viewed in some quarters as an attempt by China to take more provocative action in the areas around Taiwan.

(By Novia Huang and James Lo)

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