A US military reconnaissance plane was yesterday morning spotted flying near Taiwan’s southern airspace, marking the 12th time in the past three weeks that US military aircraft have been detected near Taiwan.
A US RC-135W Rivet Joint flew over the South China Sea, according to a flight chart posted to Twitter by the military air movement tracker Aircraft Spots.
Ministry of National Defense spokesman Major General Shih Shun-wen (史順文) did not directly confirm the sighting, except to say that Taiwan’s armed forces are closely monitoring the nation’s surrounding waters and airspace.
US military aircraft have been spotted in the skies around Taiwan 12 times since March 25. Chinese military aircraft have been spotted at least six times since Jan. 23, according to publicly available information from Aircraft Spots and the Ministry of National Defense.
Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy spokesman Gao Xiucheng (高秀成) on Monday confirmed media reports that the Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning and several escort ships on Saturday passed through the Miyako Strait and waters east of Taiwan, en route to the South China Sea for annual training exercises.
Su Tzu-yun (蘇紫雲), an analyst at the government-funded Institute for National Defense and Security Research, on Sunday said that China has expanded its maritime and air presence in the Indo-Pacific region.
“This is probably the main reason US reconnaissance planes have recently been spotted operating near the Bashi Channel — to monitor the movements of the People’s Liberation Army in the area,” Su said.
Taiwanese analysts have also said that the US and China are likely using the military movements to signal their continued commitment to the region, despite the challenges they have had in containing the COVID-19 pandemic.
China appears to have built mockups of a port in northeastern Taiwan and a military vessel docked there, with the aim of using them as targets to test its ballistic missiles, a retired naval officer said yesterday. Lu Li-shih (呂禮詩), a former lieutenant commander in Taiwan’s navy, wrote on Facebook that satellite images appeared to show simulated targets in a desert in China’s Xinjiang region that resemble the Suao naval base in Yilan County and a Kidd-class destroyer that usually docks there. Lu said he compared the mockup port to US naval bases in Yokosuka and Sasebo, Japan, and in Subic Bay
Police are investigating the death of a Formosan black bear discovered on Tuesday buried near an industrial road in Nantou County, with initial evidence indicating that it was shot accidentally by a hunter. The bear had been caught in wildlife traps at least five times before, three times since 2020. Codenamed No. 711, the bear received extensive media coverage last year after it was discovered trapped twice in less than two months in the Taichung mountains. After its most recent ensnarement last month, the bear was released in the Dandashan (丹大山) area in Nantou County’s Sinyi Township (信義). However, officials became concerned after the
The majority of parents surveyed in northern Taiwan favor the suspension of all on-site classes at schools from the junior-high level and below amid a surge in domestic COVID-19 infections, parent groups said yesterday. About 84.4 percent of respondents in a survey of 2,912 parents in northern Taiwan, where the outbreak is the most serious, said they supported suspending classes, the Action Alliance on Basic Education, the Taiwan Parents Protect Women and Children Association, and the Taiwan Love Children Association said. The groups distributed questionnaires to parents in New Taipei City, Taipei, Keelung, Taoyuan and Hsinchu city and county from Saturday morning
DETERRENCE: US National Security Council Indo-Pacific Coordinator Kurt Campbell said cross-strait affairs are on the agenda at the US-ASEAN Special Leaders’ Summit The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) yesterday thanked the Czech Senate for passing a resolution supporting Taiwan’s inclusion in the WHO and other international organizations for the second consecutive year. The resolution was passed on Wednesday with 51 votes in favor, one opposed and 11 abstentions. In addition to the WHO, it also called for Taiwan’s participation in the “meetings, mechanisms and activities” of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the International Civil Aviation Organization and Interpol. In its opening, the resolution states that the Czech Republic “considers Taiwan as one of its key partners in the Indo-Pacific region,” while noting its