Taiwan’s defence ministry warned on Tuesday of a possible “sharp increase” in military tensions after reporting renewed Chinese military activity including fighter jets crossing the sensitive median line of the Taiwan Strait.
Democratically governed Taiwan, which China claims as its own territory, has complained for three years of increased military pressure from Beijing, mostly in the form of China’s air force flying near the island.
The ministry said that on Tuesday morning, it spotted 12 Chinese military aircraft in its air defence identification zone, of which seven crossed the median line – six J-10 fighters and a single drone.
Five Chinese ships also carried out “combat readiness patrols”, the ministry said, without giving a location.
The median line had for years served as an unofficial barrier between the two sides, until China’s air force began regularly crossing it a year ago.