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Chinese electronic intelligence plane enters Taiwan’s ADIZ

Taiwan sent aircraft, issued radio warnings, deployed air defense missile systems to track PLAAF plane

Chinese Y-8 ELINT variant. (MND photo)

Chinese Y-8 ELINT variant. (MND photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A Chinese military plane entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Wednesday morning (Aug. 11), marking the second intrusion this month.

A single People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Shaanxi Y-8 electronic intelligence aircraft flew into the southwest corner of Taiwan’s ADIZ, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND). In response, Taiwan sent aircraft, broadcast radio warnings, and deployed air defense missile systems to track the plane.

So far this month, Beijing has sent a military plane into Taiwan’s identification zone on Aug. 8 and 11. Both aircraft were slow-flying turboprops, the first being an anti-submarine warfare variant, and the latest an electronic intelligence variant.

Since September of last year, Beijing has stepped up its gray zone tactics by routinely sending aircraft into ADIZ, with most occurrences taking place in the southwest corner of the zone. Compared to previous months, June and July saw fewer incursions.

An ADIZ is an area that extends beyond a country’s air space and where air traffic controllers ask incoming aircraft to identify themselves. Gray zone tactics are defined as “an effort or series of efforts beyond steady-state deterrence and assurance that attempts to achieve one’s security objectives without resort to direct and sizable use of force.”

According to MND data, Chinese aircraft were tracked in Taiwan’s ADIZ 14 times in July, 10 times in June, 18 times in May, 22 times in April, 18 times in March, 17 times in February, and 27 times in January. Last year, they were observed between 19 and 22 times each month from October and December.
Chinese electronic intelligence plane enters Taiwan’s ADIZ
Flight path of Chinese plane on Aug. 11. (MND image)