China trying to build psychological pressure on Taiwan through jet incursions: Reports

WION Web Team
Beijing, China Published: Oct 22, 2021, 05:43 PM(IST)

An H-6 bomber of Chinese PLA Air Force flies near a Taiwan F-16 in this February 10, 2020 handout photo provided by Taiwan Ministry of National Defense. In a statement, the ministry said Chinese J-11 fighters and H-6 bombers flew into the Bashi Channel to the south of Taiwan, then out into the Pacific before heading back to base via the Miyako Strait. Photograph:( Reuters )

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Experts are also urging to not exaggerate the threat posed by these incursions as the air defence identification zone (ADIZ) is not the same as Taiwan’s territorial airspace

In a continuing trend, China is once again increasing pressure on Taiwan, which is worrying experts that this could quickly turn into a war, if the two sides are not careful.

As per reports, there has been a sudden increase in the number of Chinese warplanes entering the air defence identification zone (ADIZ). This has brought attention to Taiwan and has raised concerns that this can become a global flashpoint.

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As per data compiled by news agency AFP, nearly 149 Chinese flights entered Taiwan’s Taiwan's southwestern air defence zone in four days. This incident took place when China was observing its annual national day celebrations.

This was an increase of nearly 28 per cent in total. The increase was a huge jump from September, which held the record of most numbers of flights entering Taiwan’s air space, which was 117.

The number has also raised concerns as the number of Chinese flights that have illegally entered the southwestern air defence zone of Taiwan has already doubled. As on October 22, nearly 692 flights have been recorded, wherein last year 380 incursions were reported by Taiwan in the whole year.

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Inclusion of airplanes such as nuclear-capable H6 bomber has also started building pressure on Taiwan as it has stirred the fear that if an invasion were to take place, China will be a step ahead. September 2020 was the highest number of recorded sorties and Taiwan had reported incursions by 32 fighters and three bombers that month.

In October 2021, Taiwan has reported 124 fighter jet incursions and 16 by bombers.

These sorties and incursions can help China train their pilots and test Taiwan’s denfences.

However, experts are also urging to not exaggerate the threat posed by these incursions as the air defence identification zone (ADIZ) is not the same as Taiwan’s territorial airspace. "These are part of what we call 'grey zone' tactics, it keeps psychological pressure on Taiwan," Lee Hsi-min, a retired admiral who stepped down as head of Taiwan's armed forces in 2019, told AFP.

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