Taiwan scrambles jets as officials say China rehearsing attack: report – Business Insider

  • Chinese ships and aircraft conducted a simulated attack on Taiwan on Saturday, Taiwanese officials said, per Reuters.
  • Taiwanese jets scrambled as Chinese military assets conducted missions around the Taiwan Strait, Reuters said.
  • Taiwan’s defense ministry said 14 Chinese aircraft crossed the median line.

Chinese ships and planes rehearsed an attack on Taiwan on Saturday, Taiwanese military officials said, prompting the island nation to scramble its jets, per Reuters.

Taiwan’s defense ministry said 20 Chinese aircraft and 14 warships conducted missions around the Taiwan Strait on Saturday afternoon, Reuters reported.

The ministry said that 14 of the 20 Chinese aircraft crossed the median line — a 110-mile-long strait that acts as an unofficial buffer between China and Taiwan.

Taiwanese jets scrambled, the ministry said, and the army also broadcast a warning and put shore-based missiles on stand-by, Reuters said.

A source familiar with security planning told the news agency that, off Taiwan’s east coast, Chinese warships and drones also simulated attacks on US and Japanese warships.

Reuters reported that China’s Eastern Theater Command has continued to conduct sea and air joint exercises near Taiwan to test the system’s land strike and sea assault capabilities.

The Chinese exercises, which include live-fire drills, began on Thursday and are set to continue into Sunday. The exercises came after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visited the self-ruled island of Taiwan that China claims as its own territory.

Beijing had repeatedly warned of a possible military reaction to Pelosi’s Taipei trip, Insider previously reported.

Since Thursday, drills have included firing ballistic missiles over and around Taiwan.

China also deployed aircraft and vessels around the Taiwan Strait on Friday, Taipei’s defense ministry said, with some military assets crossing the median line. Insider reported that while this is not unprecedented, it’s emblematic of the recent uptick in tensions in the region.

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