The Chinese military on Monday flew the most fighter planes and nuclear bombers in Taiwan‘s airspace since the two nations split in the late 1940s, Reuters reported.
The People’s Republic of China has escalated tensions with the Republic of China, known as Taiwan, in response to President Joe Biden‘s disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan and his family’s financial interest in China.
Biden’s foreign-policy weakness also has fueled speculation that Russia may attempt to invade disputed territories, as when it seized the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine during the Obama administration.
The Chinese People’s Liberation Army flew more than 50 aircraft, including 40 J-16 fighters and 12 H-6 bombers, which can deliver nuclear strikes.
The aircraft flew near Pratas Island, an island 170 miles off the southeast coast of Hong Kong and southwest of Taiwan.
The Chinese military has flown about 150 aircraft in Taiwan’s airspace since last Friday, when the country began its week-long celebration of National Day, which commemorates the Wuchang Uprising that overthrew China’s imperial dynasty in 1911.
The Taiwanese military responded to the aggression by scrambling fighter jets and preparing its missile-defense systems.
Taiwan called China the “chief culprit” in the escalating situation, while China blamed the United States.
The Biden administration told China to “cease” its “provocative” displays of military might, CBS News reported.
“The United States is very concerned by the People’s Republic of China’s provocative military activity near Taiwan, which is destabilizing, risks miscalculations, and undermines regional peace and stability,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement.
“We urge Beijing to cease its military, diplomatic, and economic pressure and coercion against Taiwan,” it added.
China said the Biden administration bears the blame because it is selling weapons to Taiwan and sailing American warships through the Taiwan Strait.
“China is resolutely opposed to this and takes necessary countermeasures,” China’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement about America’s involvement in the region.
“Engaging in Taiwan independence is a dead end. China will take all steps needed and firmly smash any Taiwan independence plots,” the ministry said. “China’s determination and will to defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity is unwavering.”