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Taiwan Says China Conducts Another ‘Combat Patrol’ Within a Week

Taiwan Says Chinese Planes Crossed Median Line (Credits: Asharq Al-Awsat)

The Taiwan defense ministry reported on Thursday that China conducted a “joint combat readiness patrol” near the island for the second time within a week.

This action marks another escalation in China’s military activities around Taiwan, which have remarkably increased over the past four years. Beijing regards Taiwan as its territory, a claim vehemently rejected by Taipei.

Taiwan Reports Second Chinese ‘Combat Patrol’ in a Week (Credits: Reuters)

According to the ministry, 15 Chinese military aircraft, including Su-30 fighters, participated in the patrol alongside Chinese warships around Taiwan, starting from 4 p.m. (0800 GMT) on Thursday. Ten of these aircraft crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait or flew near it, entering airspace to the north, center, and southwest of the island.

The median line, once an unofficial boundary between Taiwan and China, is now regularly breached by Chinese military aircraft, as China does not recognize its existence. China’s defense ministry did not respond to inquiries on Thursday due to the ongoing Labour Day holiday.

This recent patrol echoes a similar incident reported by Taiwan on Saturday. With the inauguration of President-elect Lai Ching-te approaching later this month, Taiwan remains vigilant for potential military exercises from China.

China conducts second day of exercises nearby (Credits: The Defense Post)

Tsai Ming-yen, Director-General of the Taiwan National Security Bureau, highlighted China’s adoption of new tactics, including nighttime combat patrols, raising concerns about escalating tensions.

China’s animosity towards Lai is evident, viewing him as a separatist threat. Despite Lai’s offers for dialogue, China has consistently rejected them, underscoring its refusal to engage with him. Lai maintains that Taiwan’s future should be determined by its people alone.

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