4 US spy planes spotted prowling south of Taiwan

4 US reconnaissance aircraft seen lurking south, southwest of Taiwan

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Boeing RC-135U. (fas.org photo)

Boeing RC-135U. (fas.org photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Aircraft spotting sites noticed at least four U.S. spy planes and one refueling aircraft flying to the south and southwest of Taiwan on Monday (June 29).

At 8:32 a.m. on Monday morning, aircraft spotting Twitter account Callsign: CANUK78 spotted a US Navy Lockheed EP-3E ARIES II electronic warfare and reconnaissance aircraft flying over the Bashi Channel just off the southern coast of Taiwan bound for the South China Sea, Eluanbi. At 8:53 a.m. aircraft spotting Twitter account Golf9 spotted a Boeing RC-135U reconnaissance aircraft taking off from Kadena Air Force base in Japan and passing over the Bashi Channel on its way to the South China Sea.

One hour later, at 9:52 p.m., Callsign: CANUK78 sighted a US Navy Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft also flying over the Bashi Channel on its way to the South China Sea. Nearly one hour after that, at 10:43 a.m., Golf9 reported a Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker refueling jet flying over the South China Sea, just to the southwest of Taiwan.

At 11:27 a.m., Callsign: CANUK78 spotted an RC-135 with a different registration number than the one spotted earlier by Golf9 circling over the South China Sea just to the southwest of Taiwan, a site where Chinese fighters and bombers have been known to frequent in recent weeks.