The Japan Air Self-Defense Force scrambled fighter jets in response to a “suspected intrusion” by a Chinese aircraft carrier into its airspace from May 6–8 over the East China Sea, Japanese officials wrote in a May 9 tweet.
Beijing also increased military drills around Taiwan.
The Japanese Defense Ministry said in a statement that four Chinese naval vessels, including the Liaoning aircraft carrier, were spotted on May 7 in the waters about 150 kilometers (93 miles) south of Ishigaki Island, Okinawa prefecture.
It added that the warships were the same as those that were spotted passing between the Okinawa and Miyako islands on May 1–2.
Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said it detected 18 Chinese aircraft, including 12 J-11 and J-16 fighter aircraft, and two H-6 bombers, entering its air defense identification zone on May 6.
The self-ruled island responded by issuing radio warnings and deploying air defense missile systems to monitor the Chinese warplanes.
Taiwan also detected the Chinese flotilla and deployed air defense missile systems to monitor its movements.
Gao Xiucheng, a spokesperson of the Chinese Navy, said on May 3 that the warships were on a routine combat training exercise in the West Pacific. Gao said the deployment was in line with international law and wasn’t targeted at any party.