China Sent 2 Fighter Jets in ‘Unsafe’ Intercept of US Military Plane

By Joshua Philipp, The Epoch Times
May 18, 2016 Updated: May 19, 2016    

The Chinese regime allegedly sent two fighter jets to intercept a U.S. military plane in international airspace in the South China Sea.

A statement from the Department of Defense (DoD) sent by email says that on May 17, two “tactical aircraft” were sent by the Chinese regime to intercept a U.S. maritime patrol reconnaissance aircraft. It says the DOD is reviewing the incident.

The incident took place in international airspace, it states, “during a routine patrol of the South China Sea.” It notes that “initial reports characterized the incident as unsafe.”

It adds, “DoD is addressing the issue through the appropriate diplomatic and military channels.”

Many details are still unclear—particularly the exact location of the incident.

The incident comes on the heels of a similar incident a week ago, on May 10. The Chinese regime scrambled two fighter jets and three warships, and had them chase the USS William P. Lawrence, a guided missile destroyer, near the Fiery Cross Reef.

The Fiery Cross Reef is part of the Spratly Island chain in the South China Sea, and it’s about 500 miles south of the Chinese mainland. It’s internationally recognized as being in international waters, but the Chinese regime has claimed the reef where it constructed an island and a military base, complete with a nearly 10,000-foot airstrip.