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Chinese fighters buzz Taiwan's air defense zone as it appoints new defense minister

February 20, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 46.5%. 1 min read.

Taiwan's air force scrambled on Friday after eight Chinese fighter aircraft flew into the southwestern part of its air defense zone in another display of stepped-up military activity around the democratic island.

(CNN)Taiwan's air force scrambled on Friday after eight Chinese fighter aircraft flew into the southwestern part of its air defense zone in another display of stepped-up military activity around the democratic island.

The Taiwanese Defense Ministry said four Chinese J-16s and four JH-7s as well as an electronic warfare aircraft flew near the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands in the top part of the South China Sea. The air force scrambled, with "radio warnings issued and air defense missile systems deployed to monitor the activity," the ministry said.

Shortly before the ministry's statement, Taiwan announced a reshuffle of senior security officials including a new, US-trained defense minister, to help bolster military modernization and intelligence efforts.

The president expected Chiu to complete the next stage of military reforms, including planning for "asymmetric warfare," focusing on high-tech, mobile weapons designed to make any Chinese attack as difficult as possible, Chang said.

"The most important task of the National Security Bureau is to understand and have a grasp on China," Chang said.

Chinese military expert Ni Lexiong, a retired professor at the Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, said this year it would likely get a big boost, partly due to the increased tensions over Taiwan.

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