TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Four Chinese military planes entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Sunday (Sept. 19), marking the 17th intrusion this month.
Two People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Shenyang J-16 fighter jets and one Shaanxi Y-8 anti-submarine warfare plane flew into the southwest corner of Taiwan’s ADIZ on Sunday morning, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND). Later on Sunday, another Y-8 anti-submarine warfare plane was tracked in the zone, also in the southwestern corner.
In response, Taiwan sent aircraft, broadcast radio warnings, and deployed air defense missile systems to monitor the PLAAF planes.
Beijing has sent a mix of spotter planes, fighter jets, and bombers into Taiwan’s identification zone every day this month except for on Sept. 2 and 18.
Since September of last year, Beijing has stepped up its gray zone tactics by routinely sending aircraft into Taiwan’s ADIZ, with most occurrences taking place in the southwest.
An ADIZ is an area that extends beyond a country’s airspace 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 August, 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 19 times in December, 22 times in November, and 22 times in October.
Chinese Y-8 ASW. (MND photo)
Flight paths of Chinese planes on Sunday morning. (MND image)
Flight path of Chinese plane on Sunday. (MND image)