Chinese military overflights near Taiwan plunge after US-Japanese statement


TAIPEI – Chinese military activity near Taiwan’s airspace has fallen sharply since the U.S. and Japanese leaders called for peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait at their April 16 summit, according to the officials. data compiled by Nikkei.

Beijing appears to be withdrawing from aggressive measures that would upset Washington over the burning issue after the United States and Japan made their first statement naming Taiwan in decades. As China celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Communist Party on July 1, the country has also prioritized internal order.

China had sent military planes to the Taiwan Air Defense Identification Zone for 75 days between Jan.1 and April 16, at a rate of about 70 percent, or about five days a week. A total of 257 jets, mostly J-10 and J-16 fighters, landed in Taiwan’s ADIZ during these incursions, for an average of 3.4 jets per incident day.

Taiwan has seen large-scale incursions of 10 or more Chinese jets in nine of those days, including six within three weeks of the US-Japan declaration.

China tends to increase overflights around Taiwan whenever Washington reports greater involvement with the island. A record 25 planes flew into the island’s ADIZ on April 12, four days before the declaration, as speculation grows that US President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga make explicit reference to Taiwan .

China’s position on April 12 also came a day after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned that “it would be a big mistake for anyone to try to change this status quo.” [on Taiwan] by force. “

Beijing’s activities near Taiwan waned after the summit, both in scale and frequency. Su Tzu-yun, of the Taiwan National Defense and Security Research Institute, said the Biden-Suga statement had a clear impact.

As of April 16, an average of 1.9 Chinese jets have entered Taiwan’s ADIZ per raid day. No incidents involving 10 or more aircraft were reported.

Incursions have only occurred in seven of the past 14 days, with two planes involved on one occasion. The other six days involved one plane each, including June 4, when Blinken slammed China on the 32nd anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown.

China wants to avoid antagonizing the United States over Taiwan, while demonstrating Beijing’s military might to those at home before the Communist Party’s centenary, Su said, noting the recent increase in provocations against countries of China. ‘South East Asia.

Sixteen Chinese military planes approached Malaysian territory on the island of Borneo on May 31. They changed course after Malaysia sent its own plane in response.

More than 220 Chinese ships have been moored by a reef in the Spratly Islands, which China and the Philippines claim as their own, since March. The Philippines has criticized the presence of ships in what the archipelago considers its exclusive economic zone.

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