Beijing’s latest Taiwan incursion includes aerial refueling aircraft

An oil tanker aircraft joined mainland China’s air patrol near Taiwan for the first time on Sunday, according to the island’s defence ministry, a move an analyst said was to show the PLA’s boosted attack ability.

The Y-20 aerial refuelling aircraft was sent with 26 military planes — 18 fighter jets, five nuclear-capable H-6 bombers, two KJ-500 airborne early warning and control aircraft and a Y-9 transport aircraft — into Taiwan’s air-defence identification zone (ADIZ), prompting Taipei to scramble fighter jets and deploy missile systems for monitoring.

The H-6 bombers and six of the fighter jets flew south of Taiwan into the Bashi Channel separating Taiwan from the Philippines before steering out into the Pacific and returning to the mainland, according to a map provided by the Taiwanese defence ministry.

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Author: Kristin Huang

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