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DEFENSE/48 PLA aircraft, ships detected near Taiwan: Defense ministry

06/22/2024 02:52 PM
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Taipei, June 22 (CNA) A total of 48 People Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft and vessels were detected in the airspace and waters around Taiwan in the 24-hour period starting at 6 a.m. Friday, with some planes seen as close as 31 nautical miles from Taiwan's southernmost tip, the defense ministry said.

Forty-one Chinese military aircraft were detected in the vicinity of Taiwan, of which 23 crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait and nine crossed its extension, entering the country's northern, southwestern, and eastern air defense identification zone (ADIZ), flight routes released on Saturday by the Ministry of National Defense (MND) showed.

Of the nine aircraft that crossed the median line's extension, a fleet made up of seven fighter jets and drones flew around the southwestern ADIZ and entered airspace off the country's east coast, some of which flew as close as 31 nautical miles (57.4 kilometers) from Cape Eluanbi on Taiwan's southernmost tip, information released by the MND showed.

An ADIZ is a self-declared area, in which a country claims the right to identify, locate, and control approaching foreign aircraft, but it is not part of its territorial airspace as defined by international law.

Meanwhile, seven PLA vessels were detected in waters off Taiwan during that same period, according to the MND.

The defense ministry said it was closely monitoring the situation and had deployed combat air patrol aircraft, coastal missile systems, and Navy vessels in response.

(By Sean Lin)

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