SDF scrambles fewer jets against Chinese planes

From NHK

Japan's Defense Ministry says that the number of scrambles against Chinese planes decreased by 30 percent between April and September, compared to the same period last year.

The ministry said on Friday that the Air Self-Defense Force scrambled jets against aircraft approaching its airspace 561 times during the 6-month period. That number is slightly lower than the one recorded the year before.

Scrambles against Chinese aircraft topped the list at 287. That was down 120 from the same period in 2016, when the ASDF scrambled a record number of jets against Chinese planes.

The number of scrambles against Russian aircraft was second on the list at 267. That was up nearly 50 percent year on year. In one case, 2 bombers circled the Japanese Archipelago.

As for Chinese aircraft, despite the overall decrease, scrambles against fighter jets increased. It was also confirmed that 6 bombers flew from the East China Sea and continued on to waters in the Pacific, off Kii Peninsula in central Japan.

Ministry officials say that was the first time Chinese warplanes were confirmed to have flown to an area off Kii Peninsula.

The ministry noted that Chinese aircraft remain active in the region, and that the number of unusual flights is rising. The ministry is remaining vigilant amid an increase in Chinese maritime activity.
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abc

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