The Taiwanese government has condemned the breach of its airspace by 38 Chinese fighter jets last Friday, the largest attack ever recorded, without relief in order to claim its sovereignty over the island.
“Of course it’s a threat. What surprises me is that the People’s Republic of China no longer has to fake an apology,” said Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu on his Twitter account.
The Taiwan Defense Department’s record detailed the first attack on 18 J-16 fighter jets, four Su-30s, two H6 bombers, and a Shaanxi Y-8 transport plane, all of which have been the subject of a radio report from the United States, tracking systems of the Taiwanese Air Force. The Department of Defense then reported that thirteen more aircraft were sighted on Friday night, ten J-16 fighters, two H-6 bombers and one KJ-500 aircraft.
The arrival of the Chinese planes on the same day as China’s National Day is the new episode of a week of tension, with Wu precisely as one of the main protagonists.
The Chinese government issued a tough statement Thursday denouncing Wu’s international efforts to support the island’s independence as “acts of a nag” and “not much more important than the buzz of flies,” according to the Taipei Times portal.
It should be remembered that China considers the island to be part of its territory, even though it has been ruled by independent authorities since 1949.
While the Taiwan State Department labeled the attack “not worth commenting” on, the Taiwan Mainland Affairs Council condemned it as an act of “slander and abuse,” which only underscores China’s gross rudeness and how close it is to part being of civilized society.
Taiwanese Prime Minister Su Tseng Chang had earlier denounced that China is “desperately increasing its military potential at the expense of regional peace”.
This Friday was the biggest break-in since the Taiwan Defense Ministry began disclosure in September 2020 and has the 15th intrusion into what is known as the Taiwan Air Defense Identification Zone.
Furthermore, the attack this Friday follows another attack involving 24 Chinese fighter jets on September 23, shortly after Taiwan applied to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Treaty on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), a trading group of 11 countries.
The Taiwanese authorities want to invest 9,000 million dollars (around 8,000 million euros) in the purchase of weapons, including new missiles, in view of what they consider to be a “major threat” from China.
Taiwanese President Tsai Ing Wen is trying to modernize the island’s armed forces, for which increased funding is a priority, especially as Beijing is increasing diplomatic and military pressure on what it regards as a province under its sovereignty.
The amount is now part of the military budget for 2022, which has to be approved by parliament, where the ruling party has a majority of the seats.