TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of National Defense (MND) tracked 29 Chinese military aircraft and four naval vessels around Taiwan between 6 a.m. on Wednesday (March 1) and 6 a.m. on Thursday (March 2).
Of the 29 People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft, 21 were tracked in the southwest corner of Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ), according to the MND. Seventeen Chengdu J-10 fighter jets entered the southwest corner of Taiwan’s ADIZ from the west, while four Shenyang J-16 jet fighters flew into the southwest sector from the south.
No PLA aircraft crossed the Taiwan Strait median line during this time. In response, Taiwan sent aircraft, naval ships, and used land-based missiles to monitor the PLA aircraft and vessels.
So far this month, Beijing has sent 54 military aircraft and seven naval vessels around Taiwan. Since September 2020, China has increased its use of gray zone tactics by routinely sending aircraft into Taiwan’s ADIZ.
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.”
Flight paths of 21 out of 29 PLA aircraft. (MND image)