Last night, Russia launched a full scale invasion of Ukraine, with some reports saying that Russian troops have already entered the Ukrainian capital of Kiev and that large scale bombardments will begin tonight.
Many have previously warned that China, smelling blood in the water, would make a move on Taiwan if Russia were to invade Ukraine. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson raised his concerns last week about the matter last week. On the eve of Russia’s invasion of China, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said that Taiwan has always been an ‘inalienable’ part of their country.
Today, China violated Taiwan’s airspace and sent eight fighter jets as well as a reconnaissance plane. Taiwan’s Air Force repelled the planes after scrambling jets to warn them off and tracking them with a guided missile. The Daily Mail Reports–
Taiwan’s air force scrambled its fighter planes on Thursday to warn away nine Chinese aircraft that entered its air defence zone on the day Russian invaded Ukraine.
Taiwan, which China claims as its own territory, has complained of regular similar missions by the Chinese air force over the last two years, though the aircraft do not get close to Taiwan itself.
The number of aircraft involved was well off the last large-scale incursion – 39 Chinese aircraft on January 23 – and since then, such fly-bys have been sporadic with far fewer aircraft.
The ministry said the latest mission involved eight Chinese J-16 fighters and one Y-8 reconnaissance aircraft, which flew over an area to the northeast of the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands at the top end of the South China Sea.
Taiwanese fighters were sent up to warn the Chinese aircraft and air defence missiles were deployed to ‘monitor the activities’, the ministry said, using standard wording for how Taiwan describes its response.
Taiwan has been warily watching the Ukraine crisis, nervous that China may try to take advantage to move on the island.
While Taipei has not reported any unusual movements by Chinese forces, the government has increased its alert level.