China scrambled two J-10 fighters over the East China Sea on
Thursday after two Japanese F-15s had followed a Chinese military
plane on routine patrol, a Chinese Defense Ministry official told
a press conference yesterday.
The J-10 fighters were sent to monitor the Japanese fighter jets
tailing the Y-8 plane as well as another Japanese reconnaissance
plane spotted in the same airspace, the official said.
The Chinese Y-8 was flying over East China Sea oil and gas fields
east of Wenzhou in Zhejiang Province when it was followed at close
range by the Japanese planes, the ministry said. A third Japanese
surveillance plane was flying nearby.
The official said that Japanese military aircraft had been
increasingly active in closely scouting Chinese aircraft.
The activity zone of Japanese military aircraft had also expanded
recently, which was the root cause of security disputes concerning
territorial waters and airspace between the two countries.
The Chinese military will be on high alert and China will resolutely
protect the security of its air defense force and uphold its
legitimate rights, the official said.