China sends bombers, spy planes to skies near Japan

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The Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force sent bombers and intelligence-gathering aircraft through international airspace between the islands of Okinawa and Miyako in the East China Sea.

The flights are becoming so regular now that Japan describes them as “regular” exercises.

Nevertheless, Japan sent fighter planes aloft to monitor the Chinese planes. Tokyo officials said no violations of Japanese airspace occurred.

“Four H-6 bombers and two intelligence-gathering aircraft flew a route that took them through the Miyako Strait and back. The flight was believed to be the first through the passageway since August, when six Chinese bombers flew near Kansai’s Kii Peninsula for the first time.

“China, under powerful President Xi Jinping, has embarked on a large-scale campaign of modernizing its military — especially its air force and navy — as it seeks to project power farther from its shores.

“Last year, the Air Self-Defense Force scrambled fighters 1,168 times, the most since records began being kept in 1958, besting the previous high of 944 — a figure that came at the height of the Cold War in 1984.” [source]

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