After China sent several aircrafts into Taiwan’s defensive buffer zone early Sunday, Taipei officials scrambled fighter aircraft to warn the Chinese forces, USA Today reported Sunday. According to Taiwan’s Defense Ministry, China’s military deployed 18 fighter jets, five H-6 bombers, and a Y-20 aerial refueling aircraft near the southern part of the island before returning to mainland. The moves came amid escalating conflict between the two countries as China refuses to recognize Taiwan’s government and claim it as its own territory.
Over the past year, Chinese military aircraft invasions have proliferated, and Taiwan has alleged that about 150 aircrafts have entered its air defense identification zone since Oct. 1. China has emphasized they are willing to control Taiwan by force, if necessary, as “talent is imperative in achieving victory in military competition and gaining the upper hand in future wars,” according to Xinhua, the state-owned news agency.