The Ministry of National Defense (MND) condemned China for harming regional peace and stability after its warplanes "intentionally breached" the median line of the Taiwan Strait on Friday.
The MND said it had monitored and deterred the movements of the planes by scrambling combat air patrols, sending radio warnings, and deploying defense missile systems, describing the rarely seen incursion of the median line as "an act of provocation."
The ministry added that an additional nine-plane military sortie -- comprising one Y-8 electronic warfare aircraft, one Y-8 RECCE aircraft, four Shenyang J-16 fighter jets, two J-10 fighter jets, and one J-11 jet -- flew into the southwestern part of Taiwan's air defense identification zone (ADIZ) later on Friday,
In response, Taiwan scrambled a combat air patrol, sent radio warnings, and deployed defense missile systems to track the Chinese military planes, according to the MND.
The incursions come as former Governor of Florida and current U.S. Senator Rick Scott visits Taiwan, and foreign ministers from the G20 meet in Bali.
Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said China's military action came at a time when G20 ministers are seeking ways to safeguard the peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.
These maneuvers posed a "severe military threat" to Taiwan, MOFA said in a statement.
According to a source quoted by Reuters, China had made the rare step of crossing the median line to send a message about the visit of Senator Scott.
Shi Yi (??), spokesman for the People's Liberation Army Eastern Theater Command, confirmed that the command had been conducting exercises in the vicinity of Taiwan while chastising the United States for "supporting the rhetoric of Taiwanese independence."
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel