Taiwan and the surrounding airspace “is all ours”, a Chinese the fighter pilot noted on Monday as People’s Liberation Army they flew jets and spy planes to the Democratic Island for more than half a day in March.
According to a record carried by newspapers in Taipei and acquired by Newsweek, the exchange between pilots from the Air Force of the Republic of China and the Air Force of the PLA took place at 10:04 local time after the Chinese military plane flew into the southwestern air defense identification zone of Taiwan (ADIZ).
The Taipei interceptor, which was not identified in local reports, sent a standard radio warning to its Chinese counterpart: “This is the Air Force of the Republic of China. The Chinese military aircraft, which is currently flying 6,000 meters in southwestern Taiwan airspace, you enter our airspace and affect aviation safety. Turn around and leave immediately. “
The answer, which came a few seconds later, was short, and the Chinese answer said, “It’s all ours.”
According to Liberty Times and Apple Daily—Two posts to post the recordings on Tuesday – the short exchange was heard and recorded by the moderators of Facebook page “Southwestern airspace of TW.”
The site is run by observers who monitor the movement of military and civilian aircraft around Taiwan, reporting in particular on maneuvers by the Chinese and US military.
A moderator who declined to be named said Newsweek that on Monday the exchange between pilots from Taiwan and China was heard with the help of a software-defined radio on the air navigation emergency frequency 121.5 MHz.
The Taiwanese army also uses 243.0 Mhz, but all attempts to push Chinese planes out of ADIZ occurred at 121.5 Mhz, the administrator added.
The PLA’s latest activity in Taiwan’s ADIZ, which is not regulated by any international law, involved a reconnaissance plane on Tuesday, marking the 18th day of March that Chinese warplanes made in defensive airspace, according to data released by the ministry. of Taiwan’s defense.
However, TW’s southwestern airspace says Chinese aerial military hardware entered the southwest corner of Taiwan’s ADIZ on 23 days this month based on the number of cases in which Taipei issued radio warnings – 61 times in March and 208 times since the beginning. of the year.
The discrepancy, the moderator said, was due to Taiwan’s defense ministry choosing not to make public the time it tracked Chinese drones.
PLA planes made 10 takeoffs at ADIZ on Monday after flying 20 fighter jets around the island last Friday. Both escalations occurred when Taiwan strengthened its informal diplomatic ties with the United States signing of a coast guard pact on March 26 and a visit to Taipei by a serving US diplomat on March 29.
Remarkable, however, are the Chinese warplanes performing something like this movement of pliers around Taiwan, with two additional fighter jets approaching the east coast, after flying across the Miyako Strait between the Japanese-controlled islands.
The maneuvers give the impression that China is stepping up its military exercises, not just conducting military intimidation, he said. Hong Tzu-chie, researcher at Institute for National Defense and Security Studies in Taipei.
“The impression that the PLA is stepping up preparations for future conflicts and wars has increased recently (or at least the PLA wants us to think that way),” Hung said. Newsweek in a written statement.
The ongoing exercises around Taiwan “have disrupted regional peace and stability and increased potential conflicts in the future,” he added.
The last PLA flights – 32 in five days and a total of 54 this month – also included flights deep in the Bashi Canal between southern Taiwan and the northern Philippines. The waterway gives access to South China Sea from the Western Pacific.
According to Hung’s analysis, the flights, although rare in recent months, are not unprecedented. Last year, PLA military planes also flew through the Bashi Canal in the western Pacific for aerial exercises, he said.
In a report this month, Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense said pilots were flying in the country 1000 extra hours, deterring PLA jets and spy planes last year.
Given the high cost of both manpower and hardware, the Air Force adjusted the way it responded to PLA raids by detaining some interceptor aircraft and sending slower reconnaissance aircraft instead.
On Monday, Taiwan’s Deputy Defense Minister Chang Che-Ping told lawmakers during a parliamentary hearing that some PLA planes are now also being tracked exclusively by surface-to-air missiles, reducing the impact on Taiwan’s aging and limited military hardware.
Chang agreed with a lawmaker who asked if the waves of record raids on Friday constituted an “attacking stance” by the Chinese military. He said maneuvers from different types of aircraft appeared to be “combined operations” by the Chinese navy and air force.
PLA air force activity around Taiwan in recent years has caused concern not only in Taipei but also in Tokyo, according to local reports over the weekend.
Tokyo newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun reports that the Japanese Ministry of Defense is seeking to increase the presence of Japanese self-defense forces on Yonaguni Island, which is less than 70 miles from eastern Taiwan.
The island, part of the Japanese prefecture of Okinawa, is home to about 1,700 people and about 160 Japanese soldiers. In the case of a Chinese takeover of TaiwanJapan fears that Beijing may look at Yonaguni next, the report said.
The continued stability of the Taiwan Strait was raised as a joint concern by the Minister of Defense Lloyd Austin and his Japanese counterpart Nobuo Kishi after their “2 + 2” meeting earlier this month. Analysts say the conflict between Taiwan and China is likely to involve the United States and therefore their ally Japan.