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China Makes 2nd Largest Breach of Taiwan’s Air Defense Zone This Year as U.S. Delegation Visits

Planes from the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) air force fly in formation in Beijing on Oct. 1, 2019. (Wang He/Getty Images)
Planes from the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) air force fly in formation in Beijing on Oct. 1, 2019. (Wang He/Getty Images)

As a U.S. senator lead a delegation to visit Taiwan on May 30 to June 1, dozens of warplanes of the Chinese communist regime entered Taiwan’s air defense zone and were scrambled by Taiwan’s military jets.

Taiwan’s Ministry of Defense announced on May 30 that 30 PLA warplanes of the Chinese regime breached Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) from the southwest. It was the second largest incursion by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) this year, following 39 PLA jets entering Taiwan’s ADIZ on Jan. 23 this year.

This time, the incursion came as U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) led a delegation to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen, as well as President of the Executive Yuan Su Tseng-chang and Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua for an in-depth exchange on various important issues in Taiwan-U.S. relations, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China—Taiwan’s official name.

Duckworth is a member of the “Senate Taiwan Connection.”

The Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Duckworth has repeatedly promoted or co-signed Taiwan friendly bills in the U.S. Senate. For example, she introduced the “Strengthen Taiwan’s Security Act of 2022” on May 26 supporting Taiwan and the United States strengthening coordination in response to Taiwan’s security situation in light of the CCP’s provocations, while proposing specific measures to strengthen Taiwan’s defense capabilities.

Duckworth and 51 other senators sent a letter to U.S. President Joe Biden in mid-May, calling for Taiwan to be included in the “Indo-Pacific Economic Framework” (IPEF). She also co-sponsored the “Taiwan Partnership Act” with Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) to develop partnership between the National Guard and Taiwan as a means of maintaining a sufficient self-defense capability. The initiative has been included in the “2022 Fiscal Year National Defense Authorization Act” (NDAA 2022) through legislation.

In June, 2021, Duckworth visited Taiwan with Sens. Dan Sullivan (R-Ark.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.), and announced the donation of vaccines to Taiwan on behalf of the U.S. government.

China’s latest incursion of Taiwan’s ADIZ follows President Joe Biden’s statement on May 23 in which he said that the United States will intervene militarily to defend Taiwan if it was attacked by CCP forces. White House officials, however, later walked back on those comments, saying there was no change in U.S. policy, known as “strategic ambiguity” under which Washington is deliberately vague on whether it would come to the island’s defense in the event of the Chinese invasion.

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