A Canadian warship has sailed through the Taiwan Strait, the Ministry of National Defense said yesterday. The voyage comes at a time of heightened military tension between Taiwan and China.
Beijing has stepped up its military activity around Taiwan in the past few weeks, including sending fighter jets to cross the median line of the Taiwan Strait.
The ministry said that the Canadian corvette had sailed into the Strait from the South China Sea, heading north.
The Taiwanese military monitored the ship while it was in the Strait, the ministry said, adding that the situation was normal.
The Royal Canadian Navy has sailed through the Strait before, including in September last year.
The US Navy has also been conducting regular passages.
Separately, military sources yesterday said that a Chinese military vessel has been observed operating in international waters 30 nautical miles (55.5km) off Taiwan’s east coast for more than a day since early Friday.
The Chinese ship was spotted in waters off Hualien County in the early hours of Friday morning, before sailing northward yesterday, the sources said.
The ship “sailed even nearer to Taiwan” than a similar incident on Sept. 17, when a Chinese spy ship appeared in the waters off Hualien and remained in the area for more than a week, the sources said.
The military officials did not identify the Chinese vessel, but said that a patrol ship has been dispatched to monitor its movements.
The area is close to where the military usually tests missiles and other projectiles.
Meanwhile, the ministry also confirmed that a Chinese Shaanxi Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft yesterday entered Taiwan’s southwestern air defense identification zone (ADIZ), the 10th Chinese intrusion since Sept. 16.
The military responded by scrambling fighter jets, issuing radio warnings and mobilizing surveillance and air defense assets until the Chinese planes left the ADIZ, the ministry said.
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