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China fires 'carrier killer,' 'Guam killer' missiles in retaliation for U-2 flyover

PLA launches 2 ballistic missiles into South China Sea in apparent response to U-2 flight

DF-26 missiles being displayed during parade. (YouTube screenshot)

DF-26 missiles being displayed during parade. (YouTube screenshot)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — In an apparent retaliation for the flight of a U.S. spy plane over a no-fly zone the previous day, China on Wednesday (Aug. 26) reportedly launched two missiles into the South China Sea, including its vaunted "aircraft-carrier killer" missile.

China lodged "stern representations" on Tuesday after a U.S. U-2 reconnaissance aircraft flew over a no-fly zone set up over People's Liberation Army (PLA) live-fire drills in the Bohai Sea. The PLA launched two ballistic missiles into the South China Sea on Wednesday morning, according to a source cited by the South China Morning Post.

One of the missiles was reported to be a DF-26B, which is an intermediate-range ballistic missile, and was fired from Qinghai Province. As it was the first Chinese-made missile capable of striking U.S. military facilities in Guam, it has been dubbed by netizens as the "Guam killer."

The other missile fired was a DF-21D, which is a medium-range ballistic missile, and reportedly took off from Zhejiang Province. As this variant of the DF-21 is an anti-ship ballistic missile (ASBM) capable of striking an aircraft carrier, it has been dubbed the "carrier killer."

The source stated that the two missiles are believed to have been fired into an area of the South China Sea somewhere between Hainan Province and the Paracel Islands. Below is a tweet by East Pendulum showing the estimated impact zone of the missiles based on a maritime warning issued on Wednesday:

The Zhejiang Maritime Safety Administration issued Wednesday's maritime warning that would be in effect from 8 a.m. Aug. 27 to 6 p.m. Aug. 30

Update: 08/27 3:30 p.m.

NHK has cited U.S. military officials as stating that the PLA fired four missiles into the South China Sea on Wednesday. However, they are not yet able to confirm the types of missiles fired.