Taiwan reports ‘record number’ of Chinese jets in its air defence zone

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Some 28 Chinese military aircraft flew into Taiwan’s air defence zone on Tuesday, said its defence ministry, the largest reported incursion so far.

Fighters and nuclear-capable bombers were among those in the so-called air defence identification zone (ADIZ).

The incident comes after Nato leaders on Monday warned of the military challenge posed by China.

While democratic Taiwan sees itself as a sovereign state, Beijing views the island as a breakaway province.

According to Taipei, the Chinese mission included 14 J-16, six J-11 fighters, four nuclear capable H-6 bombers as well as anti-submarine, electronic warfare and early warning aircraft.

An air defence identification zone is an area outside of a country’s territory and national airspace but where foreign aircraft are still identified, monitored, and controlled in the interest of national security. It is self-declared and technically remains international airspace.

The Chinese aircraft flew close to the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands, as well as around the southern part of Taiwan itself.

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