42 military aircraft, 8 naval ships detected around Taiwan after China’s drill announcement

On Saturday, at least 42 Chinese military aircraft were detected around Taiwan, with 29 crossing the country’s northern, central, and southern median lines, according to Taiwan News, citing the Ministry of National Defense (MND).

According to an official press release, eight Chinese military ships were also confirmed alongside the aircraft. J-10s, 11s, and J-16s were among the 29 aircraft that flew through the Air Defence Identification Zone (ADIZ). They are said to have flown into Taiwan’s southwest ADIZ.

The majority of the Taiwan Strait, a portion of Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangxi, and the East China Sea are all included in Taiwan’s ADIZ. Following Taiwan President Tsai Ing-Wen’s meeting with US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Wednesday this week, China responded by announcing a massive, three-day military exercise surrounding Taiwan.

Earlier, the MND reported that between Friday morning (April 7) and Saturday am (April 8), it had detected 13 Chinese military aircraft and three navy vessels in the vicinity of Taiwan (April 8). According to Taiwan’s defence ministry, four of the detected aircraft-a SU-30, a Y-8 RECCE, and two J-16s had crossed the Taiwan Strait’s median line and entered Taiwan’s southwest ADIZ, reported Taiwan News. Taiwan has never been governed by the Chinese Communist Party, but Beijing claims it is part of its territory and seeks “peaceful reunification” with Taiwan.

Tensions between China and Taiwan escalated after the US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi travelled to the breakaway country in August last year. China raised objections to Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, which China claims as part of its territory. This time, Taiwan has retaliated by sending aircraft, naval boats, and land-based missiles to observe PLA planes and ships.

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