TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Two Chinese military planes entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Tuesday (Jan. 19), marking the 16th intrusion this month.
A People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Y-8 electronic warfare plane intruded into the southwest corner of the ADIZ, while a Y-8 electronic intelligence aircraft only briefly entered the zone, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND). In response, the Taiwanese military scrambled jet fighters, broadcast radio warnings, and deployed air defense missile systems to track the planes.
This month, Chinese military planes were also spotted in Taiwan’s identification zone on Jan. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and 19. Since mid-September of last year, China has been sending planes into Taiwan’s ADIZ regularly, with most instances occurring in the southwest corner of the zone and consisting of one to three aircraft.
According to MND data, PLAAF planes were detected in Taiwan’s ADIZ 19 times in December, 22 times in November, and 22 times in October, including a drone on Oct. 22.
The Y-8 is a medium-sized, medium-range transport aircraft based on the Soviet Antonov An-12 and produced by the Shaanxi Aircraft Corporation. It can be operated by as few as two or as many as five crew members, depending on the variant.
The Y-8 is 34 meters in length and has a 38-m wingspan. It is outfitted with four WJ-6 turboprop engines and has a maximum speed of 660 kilometers per hour, a 10.4-km service ceiling, a ferry range of 4,800 km, and a maximum range of 5,615 km.
Chinese Y-8 ELINT on Jan. 19 (MND photo)
Flight paths of Chinese planes on Jan. 19 (MND image)