Taiwan’s Defense Ministry confirmed Saturday that five Chinese warships and at least 17 fighter jets have approached the territory’s maritime security line, in a new show of force by Beijing to reclaim what it considers to be its sovereign rights over the territory.
At least seven aircraft arrived to temporarily cross the median that separates the Taiwan Strait and marks the beginning of the island’s air security zone.
As it routinely does, Taiwan responded by declaring an alert to its forces and warning Chinese aircraft and ships to immediately fall back positions, according to the ministry’s statement, reported on its Twitter account.
These incursions follow the usual pattern set in recent months by the Chinese military, which went so far as to conduct live-fire drills off the coast of the strait during a visit to Taiwan earlier this month by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Pelosi’s visit was considered by China as one of the worst diplomatic aggressions in recent times by interpreting it as a gesture of recognition.